Currently accounting for over 200 million trips annually, if you haven’t yet come across the Millennials, then these are a group of travellers to be reckoned with. This savvy group are very generally defined as anyone born after the mid-1980s and before 2000 and they are taking the world of travel by storm. From the way that they choose to book their trips to the kind of authentic experience they seek whilst on their journey, the travelling industry has been rapidly adjusting to fit this group of people and rightly so; it is believed that by the year 2020 they will account for more than 320 million trips worldwide.
For this reason alone the way they choose to plan their breaks is something to pay attention to; however, if you haven’t yet come across the Millennial traveller then here are 5 basic things to understand:-
It isn’t just the fact that such a large proportion of them are travelling which gives the Millennials a whole heap of influence (although this certainly plays a part) but more the way they choose to share their trips and experiences with the world. The boom in social media means that we can virtually travel along with people from the comfort of our own homes. Through these various platforms we can visually see what is happening; the good and the bad and perhaps be inspired to book our own trip as well. Many Millennial travellers love to tell their story and so will look for those ‘money’ shots of stunning landscapes, sunsets and cityscapes which they can share with a wider audience.
Beyond this, there is an increasing rise in travel blogs, sharing the ins and outs of world travel and with this comes a great responsibility and sway as well. A company’s reputation could rise or fall just off the back of one bloggers experience so it is well worth paying attention to what they are saying. Millennials are much more likely to review their experience than the older generation whether that’s via a third party website such as Trip Advisor or just sharing on their own social media accounts. In turn they are also far more likely to research other people’s opinions of a place or a hotel before heading out there themselves and a large portion of them would never book either a trip or a hotel without first seeing what other people were saying about it.
Their love of travel
Research suggests that Millennials don’t just see travel as an interesting pastime but as something they value almost as highly as their personal possessions. They love to travel and it is something which features regularly in their daily lives, whether that’s planning a trip, sharing photos on social media of past trips or actively travelling. Everywhere you look in a Millennial’s life you will find chatter about travel and this really contributes to the way in which they go about booking their experiences, from the use of technology such as via a hotel app to the level of luxury they expect whilst holidaying. When we talk about travel we don’t just mean long haul journeys either; a Millennial considers a short weekend break just as important as a fortnight abroad. It is much more about the overall experience than just the physical act of travelling somewhere new.
The way they travel
The Millennial generation believes heavily in a good work-life balance and whilst they do often seek the sun on their travels this doesn’t make up the primary reason for their journeying. It mostly comes down to finding adventure, to pushing the boundaries and seeking out an authentic and genuine experience in the country they have chosen to visit. That said, as children of the technology-era they also expect to be able to book and organise things quickly and at the click of a button. They are much more likely to use their smart phones or tablets to make a booking via the likes of a luxury hotel app and they expect things to be easy, straightforward and immediate. Whilst a Millennial will spend a good deal of time researching and planning out their trip, they also don’t necessarily want to have every last detail sorted out for them. Often they will plan the ‘big’ stuff such as travel and accommodation but decide on the finer details such as day trips and adventures when they have arrived. They will almost certainly expect to be able to use their mobile phones and smart devices to book this and they will want the option of being able to sort this out on the spot quickly and efficiently. Digital tickets, digital confirmations and ‘apps’ are all key parts of hooking a Millennial and making sure they visit your establishment.
Their spending habits
As we mentioned above, Millennials are much more willing to invest their hard earned money in a good travelling adventure and they see the entire thing as a very worthwhile endeavour. Although they will spend time hunting out a good bargain this is not the same as being ‘cheap’ and many Millennials are very willing to spend that little bit extra in order to secure a luxury experience. What a Millennial wants is to know that when they spend their money, they are getting a good return on the investment and their spending habits are driven by their other travelling behaviours. They want a highly rated trip, with good reviews, unique experiences and at the best price they can secure it for. Understanding this is key to knowing how the Millennials will choose to spend their money and what they will choose to spend it on.