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Hotel marketing beliefs shattered

Profile Photo By: Steve Shellum
June 29, 2015

Hotel marketing beliefs shattered

Consulting group MMGY Global?s 2015 Portrait of American Travelers reveals emerging shifts in the travel habits and intentions of Americans that call into question several prevailing beliefs maintained by industry marketers.

It says the results have significant implications for the manner in which the industry markets its products, and the way in which consumers are likely to respond.

The 25th annual survey of 2,832 US adults reveals implications for the industry including an uncertain outlook for the future growth of online travel agencies (OTAs), an impressive comeback for the cruise industry, provocative insights into the preferences of Millennial travellers, the sources of information that affluents trust, and who is helping fuel the growing sharing economy.

?We were surprised to find such significant shifts in travel preferences in just one year. In addition, the survey revealed several unexpected trends across generational groups,? said Steve Cohen, vice-president of Insights for MMGY Global.

?Clearly the industry is in a state of flux, as the way people view and make decisions regarding travel is evolving at a much faster pace than in previous years.?

A brief summary of key shifts:

* Travellers are increasingly migrating from OTAs when making bookings and heading directly to travel brand sites to both research and book travel at a substantially higher rate than in previous years; only 58 percent of travellers obtained travel information from an OTA during the past year, down significantly from the 84 percent who did so in 2014.

* Among travellers who regularly seek information from an OTA site when planning a vacation, only 13 percent typically book their reservations on these sites, down from 36 percent just one year ago.

* Respondents cited the main reasons for booking direct are a belief they will get the best prices by doing so (64%), and that they generally find it more convenient than booking with an OTA (67%).

* Overwhelmingly, the top resource cited for advice on both destinations and travel suppliers was TripAdvisor (87%).

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