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This presentation focuses on the 18 to 35 year-old age group and what their desires are when they travel. It will be of use to those marketing travel products to them or travel advisors seeking to expand their portfolio of clients in this age bracket.
Data is from MMGY Global, Ultra Luxury Exchange and 12 roundtables we’ve hosted over the past year. Plus anecdotal info.
Not necessarily on the beach.
They also like the idea of the different personalities of the all inclusive. They want scuba, ziplining, luxury transfers. They like the idea of luxury transfers.
They don’t want a high volume of restaurants, they want high quality restaurants
At our Ultra Summit in March, hosted 35 advisors, polled them and this is what they told us…
The Great Recession is over.
Millennial Travel Traits and Habits
Focus on Millennial Travelers
Brought to you by Ruthanne Terrero, VP/Editorial Director:
The Big Picture: Travel is Up!
Demand for travel is the highest it’s been since 2004.
16 million trips are taken a year and that number is growing
8 out of 10 affluent consumers said they will take an
international trip in the near future.
As demand grows, rates will go up as suppliers get more
buying power. They will have more leverage when negotiating
rates for FITs.
THE PORTRAIT OF AMERICAN
A national survey conducted in 2013 by MMGY Global.
2,511 active leisure travelers who reside in households with an
annual income of $50,000 or more (including an “affluent
traveler” subset of households with an annual income over
They had taken at least one leisure trip of 75 miles or more
from home during the previous 12 months requiring overnight
How Mexico Fared Last Year
12% of U.S. leisure travelers who took an international trip
19% visited the Caribbean
29% visited Europe
Desire to Travel In Next 2 Years
24% of US leisure travelers are interested in visiting
Mexico on vacation during the next two years
47% are interested in visiting the Caribbean
61% are interested in visiting Europe
Most Interested in Going To Mexico
Millennials (31 percent) showed the strongest interest in
visiting Mexico in the next 2 years.
What is a Millennial?
They are 18-35 years of age
Recognize the size of the market: There are 95 million Millennials out
That’s compared to 78 million Baby Boomers.
They spend $200 billion a year on travel.
They comprise 22 percent of the traveling public and while they’re leaning
toward budget travel now, they’re growing up and will soon be able to
spend more. They are the future.
They take on average eight to nine trips a year; that’s business +
pleasure, but they’re extending work trips into leisure breaks.
Activities of greatest interest to
Millennials while on vacation include:
81% - having enough time to relax and unwind
79% - a destination I have never visited before
78% - safety of the destination
76% - an opportunity to try new and unusual cuisine
72% - a beach experience
66% - visiting architectural sites
61% - shopping
59% - visiting an amenity spa
57% - nightlife and entertainment
53% - hiking/climbing/biking
48% - participation in water sports
46% - gambling
45% - playing golf
Note: How Do Millennials Unwind?
Ask them to define that for you.
Intel from the Travel Agent magazine
Mexico Roundtable at Tianguis
Millennials are traveling in “group couple trips.” They see
Mexico as an upscale viable jet set destination, on par with Las
Vegas and South Beach.
They want to get dressed up and
go out at night, either at the
resort or outside.
The ease of the all inclusives
appeals to them.
They want to fly four to five hours,
max, for their getaways.
Millennials Can Be Foodies…
They don’t want a high volume of restaurants, they want high-quality
They want to know
the brands of the
liquor that will be
They’re curious about
available at resorts.
YOLO!! The Luxury Millennial
The Millennial buzzword, YOLO. (You Only Live Once.)
Using this as an excuse, Millennials are spending their money
NOW to go to iconic hotels or the newest destination.
They’ll worry about the rest later.
They don’t believe that Social Security
will be there for them when they retire;
they don’t have hopes for a bright future.
FOMO!! Fear of Missing Out
Millennials can see
everything their friends
and strangers are
doing and want to
be a part of it.
Ask Millennial clients
if they have friends
who might want to
travel with them.
Building a Millennial Itinerary
Itineraries need to be less tour heavy and
more active. Suggest taking a bike ride
through a city on arrival.
A car and driver for a full day is not the
ultimate luxury for Millennials who may feel trapped or want to
spend that money on something else.
Sell Millennials on a hotel’s rooftop bar or garden terrace rather
than on the size of the room.
Wow them: Millennials like unique surprise amenities, like a
chocolate bar with their name inscribed on it.
Top Tips: The Millennial Sales Process
You need to make them listen.
Convince them that you know what
you’re talking about. Be patient and
strong when they challenge you
with what their friends told them or what they read online.
It’s worth it. They are the next generation so you need to learn
to work with them.
Get As Much Info From Them Up Front
If they’re taking a big trip, you need to get them past texting
Have them fill out a questionnaire
online they can get through quickly.
Work with them to choose the
destination first, then the resort, then
the room category, the customized
experiences, then the nightlife
How to Attract Millennial Clients
Having Millennial advisors helps. But that’s not always
necessary, however as Millennials do see advisors older than
themselves as experts.
Be an advisor to the entire family, including the children and
grandchildren, regardless of who is paying.
Incentivize clients to recommend you to their children.
Focus on honeymoon travel.
Tapping into the Millennial Culture
Millennials like to champion brands they love. Be sure your
brand is something they want to be a part of.
Let the culture of your business show through online,
Facebook, Instagram and other social media. Create a vibe
people want to be a part of.
Don’t do a hard sell on Facebook. Posting deal after deal will
make Millennials walk away. Instead, speak of the your own
travel experiences. Talk software, not hardware.
More Millennial Traits
They want authenticity and do not want to feel like a tourist,
They are more likely to try new things while on vacation.
They, more than any other group, want to connect with people
They want to share what they are experiencing as they are
experiencing it via social networks.
Social Networks: How They Shop
Companies and institutions have placed great importance on
their home pages but people are now building their own
homepages via Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. You need to
push yourself on to their pages.
On these sites they’re also seeing what their peers are
enjoying in terms of financial milestones. Cars, homes, trips.
This creates peer pressure for them and it also exposes them
to photos of destinations and hotels they’d likely not have seen
or noticed before.
Attracting Millennial Advisors
Offering good pay and benefits and training
High commission splits on their own business
Associate program with paid commissions
Flexible office environment and the ability to work from home
Beware: It’s a New Day for Millennials
With the economy now opening up,
Millennials are finding for the first time that
they have options in the job market.
Their friends are finding new jobs and that
makes them curious as to what’s out there.
If they came to you as entry level during the recession, be sure
to treat them as associates now, not recent grads. They want
respect and a good salary. They may not be loyal to staying
with you as they venture out into the world.
Don’t Fret! Baby Boomers Still Rock
The Baby Boom generation represents the
“sweet spot,” as they still have that strong
intent to travel and most have the money
Seniors also continue to be a mainstay of
Hot Off the Press: Amadeus Study
Amadeus just released a view of today’s Active Senior
travelers based on trend analysis, desk research and focus
group interviews with frequent
travelers ages 50+ in the U.S., United
Kingdom, France and Germany.
By 2020, the global population of adults
age 65 and older will triple to 700 million,
including one in six Americans.
Challenging “Old” Assumptions
Active Seniors are young at heart and do
not consider themselves “old.”
They finally feel they have the time, energy
and funds to explore and do new things.
Travel becomes more experience driven,
as they seek to spend their time in more
One size does not fit all.
Doing Versus Owning
Active Seniors no longer measure what they have by the
material goods they possess, rather by the experiences they
They value “sight-doing” vs. sightseeing, being active, learning,
discovering, and finding excitement in new experiences vs.
owning new things.
Leaving a Legacy
Active Seniors feel they are in a better economic position than
their children, and want to share experiences that enrich the
They seek out altruistic activities
and view “voluntourism,”
mixing volunteer and tourism
activities, as a way to actively
contribute to society.
In a world where technology seems to prevail, Active Seniors
see technology as a means rather than an end.
“Always on” technology is not acceptable to them; they
appreciate human interaction, and value
travel professionals who offer personalized
service and convey a sense of trust and
Latest Luxury Travel Trends
For the past year, Luxury Travel Advisor has hosted at least
one roundtable a month across the globe, bringing together
suppliers and travel advisors to share consumer trends.
The following insights are culled from 12 meetings with an
average of eight to 12 participants each and from the Ultra
Luxury Summit held March 25-27, 2014 in Chicago + from
Affluent Spending Their Wealth Now
The recession saw a holding back on spending. That
trend is gone.
The 55+ affluent travelers have decided they are not
taking it with them nor are they leaving it behind.
And they’re spending it on travel.
Today, We’re All A-Listers
Consumers want hotel staff to remember their names and what
they did on their last trip.
Everyone at a luxury hotel these days considers themselves a
VIP and expects
to be treated accordingly. Everyone.
Personalization, customization and authenticity are the buzz
words for today.
Even the Wealthy Want Value
People do not care how much things cost as long as they feel something
is being returned for their money.
Jonas Schuermann, Mandarin Oriental, Hong
For the past three years, we’ve not sold a hotel that doesn’t come with
some value add. Fifteen years ago, I never asked for breakfast or
Internet. Now it’s the norm and it’s totally expected.
Peter Carideo, CRC Travel
Advance Bookings Are Back
High season and festive season have moved back to a more
advanced booking time. Certain hot properties have to be
reserved very far in advance or it’s difficult to clear space.
2015 and 2016 are being booked now.
Authenticity is in Demand
People want to have a sense of where
they are. We encourage our hotels to
come up with experiences that are
always changing. In Paris, our chef
takes guests to the market where they
buy white asparagus when it’s in season.
They go back and they cook it
and everyone is touched by that.
Darren Gearing, Shangri-La Hotels & Resorts
It’s not always about the marquee,
super-expensive experiences, it might be
just a simple visit to learn paddle-boarding or something like
that. We are cultivating relationships with local suppliers to get
their guests insider access to experiences.
Christopher Gould, The Atlantic Hotel, Fort Lauderdale
The New “Bleisure”
The leisure guest and the corporate guest seem to be merging
into each other. A business traveler can bring a spouse and
kids or they can tag on a couple of days to enjoy a destination.
Multi-Generational Travel Gets Bigger
Family trips have expanded to group size over the past few
years. Now the groups are getting larger with up to 40 traveling
at once as family members join in.
Guaranteed adjoining rooms, villas and rental homes are vital
The World As Classroom
We’ve got so many more families with the
next generation coming along; they take
the kids out of school saying, “This is a
better experience than school.”
Amanda Hyndman, Mandarin Oriental Bangkok
I’m Turning 30, 40, 50, 60, 75!
Celebration travel is also strong. People
are traveling in groups to enjoy their
30th, 40th or 50th birthdays and they’re
bringing their friends along.
Email me with questions at
VP/Editorial Director, Travel Agent and Luxury Travel Advisor