A Matter of Percentages
A Matter of Percentages
2018 was all a mater of percentages and a busy year for everyone. Travelers didn’t find many new rules passing through TSA, nor were they offered a great deal of new or innovating offers that would bring someone from one preferred carrier to another. Simply stated, the only thing exciting that occurred with travelers throughout last year, was the travelers themselves.
Adventure seeking individuals took charge and dove right in. Booking travel to the “roads less traveled”, took photos and videos of the entire excursion, then shared it with the world on social media or on their personal blog. Fortunately for FlightGurus we enjoyed receiving interesting articles from many of those adventurous trailblazers, and have lived the adventure through the descriptive words, engaging images and some thrilling videos. As we embark on a new year, the team of Gurus in the office held yet another round table meeting, reviewing what our customers searched for the most in 2018. Here’s what we found:
2018 FlightGurus Travelers booking by the numbers.
2018 FlightGurus Travelers booking by the numbers.
What was more important?
Flights: Price: 44% Number of Stops: 44% Airline: 12%
Hotels: Price: 55% Amenities: 38% Proximity to Airport: 7%
Car Rentals: Price: 59% Vehicle Options: 20% Pick-up/Drop-Off Locations: 21%
With this data in mind, we found that we were right in line with what the consumer wants. Yay Us!.
We have partnered with the best brands and carriers in the travel industry and in 2019, we will continue to offer the superior services that we have provided thousands of customers each year.
So what else can we expect from 2019?
From artificial intelligence-inspired holidays to activities that offset the environmental impact of your stay, 2019 promises to be an enthralling year for travel. Pepijn Rijvers, Chief Marketing Officer at Booking.com says:‘With technological advancements, an ever more connected world and a continuously growing consumer appetite for the best travel experiences, we’re poised for groundbreaking developments, taking travel to unexplored heights.’ While we might know where we’re hoping to travel to, it’s about time we start thinking about what we want to do when we get there and the trends everyone will be jumping on this year.
Maximizing the Micro Trip
Over half of global travelers (53%) report that they plan to take more weekend trips in 2019, which will mean big business for local economies. 2019 will be the year of ‘bite sized travel’ – squeezing in more curated travel itineraries into shorter time frames. Thanks to improvements in flight routes, transport, cheap flights, on-demand car rentals and accommodation, micro trips will become increasingly more popular and varied. The chance to stay in unique and remarkable types of accommodation during short getaways will also reportedly become trendier so get those caravan bookings in, ASAP.
Think of 2019 as the year for the conscious traveler, with everything from human rights and equality to improved working conditions and environment issues influencing people’s decisions about potential travel destinations. Almost half of travelers feel social issues in possible travel destinations are of real importance when choosing where to go. Meanwhile, over half choose not to go to a destination if they feel it will negatively impact the people who live there. Safety, regardless of gender, ethnicity or sexual orientation are also of great importance to explorers. Platforms such as Destination Pride are harnessing the power of multiple data sources to provide travelers with a ranking of how LGBT+ friendly their chosen travel destination is, while destinations and organizations will increasingly step up their support for women travelling alone. Data reveals that almost one in five (19 %) travelers plan to travel to attend a Pride festival in 2019, most prominently younger explorers with almost a third (30%) of 18 to 34-years old.
Easy Does It
Artificial intelligence, virtual reality, speech recognition – these are the innovations that’ll slowly take over and simplify the way we holiday in 2019. Think key-less room-access with your phone, personalized travel tips or a robotic concierge who can communicate with guests in their mother tongue.
Travelers are reportedly now more enthusiastic about real-time luggage tracking through a mobile app (57%) and having a single app for all their planning, booking and travel needs (27%) than the prospect of using self-driving transportation in their destination (40%).
2019 will also see more tech developed for use pre-trip at research stage. Almost a third (31 per cent) of global travelers admit to liking the idea of a ‘virtual travel agent’ in their home, and one in five want to see technology such as augmented reality helping to familiarize themselves with a destination before they arrive. Something FlightGurus.com offers directly on their website. You can use Google Maps, and pin-drop yourself to any destination in the world. View and explore anything from the arriving airport, research hotels with real-time street views or place yourself at the exact location of any point of interest. Easily with just a few clicks. The ability to see where you are going, BEFORE you get there has enabled millions of travelers to get a feel for their dream vacation or acclimate to a new environment for business or pleasure.
Up close and personal
2019 is the year to seriously look at how your travel information is consumed and used. A third of travelers (34%) admit to wanting someone or something to do the hard work for them and make travel recommendations. Meanwhile, around two fifths (41%) want travel brands to use technologies such as AI to make travel suggestions based on past travel experience. Over half (52%) says they’d be excited to use a digital tour guide, bringing them a truly bespoke experience so next year is definitely a time to watch out for companies using better ways to curate and delivery our picture-perfect holidays at the click of a button.
NASA will start construction of its Lunar Space Station in 2019 (launching in 2022) and we’ll continue to see considerable investment in orbital spaceflight in 2019. Four in ten travelers admit to being excited about the prospect of space travel in the future and are open to considering the experience themselves (38%). Until space travel becomes a reality (2019 isn’t the year for that, just yet), people will still be wanting to explore uncharted territories here on Earth in the coming year. For example, 60% of travelers say they want to stay in accommodation under the sea.
Over half (56%) of global travelers agree travelling has taught them invaluable life skills, and 2019 will see a rise in people’s desire to learn something new – this may include volunteering and skills-based holidays – while on holiday. Generation Z will reportedly become more acutely aware of the need to question expensive university degrees over and against life skills that can be learned while travelling. Trips with a purpose will become more popular in 2019, with 68 per cent of global travelers considering taking part in cultural exchanges to learn a new skill, followed by a volunteering trip (54%) and international work placements (52%)
Travel with experiences at its core was one of 2018’s major travel trends but 2019 will take it even further, says Booking.com. Almost two thirds of travelers (60%) value experiences higher than material possessions, now which will mean 2019 will see travelers packing in many different and authentic experiences. From where you eat and sleep to how you shop, there will be more of a focus on comfort and happiness, than materialistic opportunities. In 2019, two fifths of travelers (42%) plan to visit a destination that makes them feel like a child again so watch out for more tactile exercises (think ball pits and bouncy castles) for your more traditional thrill-seeking adventures.
Plastic Not-So Fantastic
According to WRAP, the amount of plastic waste generated annually in the UK is estimated to be nearly 5 million tons so it’s no surprise the environment will be a hot topic of conversation in 2019. Its predicted that millennial’s and Gen Z travelers will look for sustainable experiences in their destination choices in the new year, while accommodation providers will look to reduce their plastic usage and increase their sustainable credentials. A staggering 86 % of global travelers reportedly state that they would be willing to spend some time on activities that offset the environmental impact of their stay, with over 37% are willing to clear plastic and litter from a beach or other tourist attraction.