There has been a global shift, and it’s a drastic one. International travellers are now spending more and expecting more. They are no longer willing to settle for semi-satisfactory experiences when they decide to splash out on a holiday.
In part 1 of this blog, we look at the most recent trends occurring within the luxury travel space and why catering to the sophisticated traveller is now a must for today’s hoteliers.
Modern travellers are happy to spend that little extra to make their getaway that much more special and luxurious.
British families spend an average of two months’ salary on their summer holiday while Australians hand over an average of $3,962 on each overseas trip, with a suggested future increase of 9%.
If people are prepared to invest this much in their vacation, it’s safe to say they want to experience something amazing.
Expectations are on the rise.
Online booking sites which cater specifically to the more sophisticated traveller are seeing great successes. TheLuxeNomad.com – an exclusive members-only site making luxury travel more attainable through Flash Sales and 24/7 Best Available Rates – is just one example of a booking site that has been gaining a lot of popularity. Based in the Asia Pacific, the world’s fastest growing travel region, its celebrity ‘nomads’ include Taiwanese actor Godfrey Gao, Australian celebrity blogger Margaret Zhang and Hong Kong supermodel Jocelyn Luko. Social media is also going crazy for the brand, with Facebook recording over 73,000 fans and Instagram generating over 57,000 loyal followers.
Jetsetter.com is yet another unique travel site providing its more than 20 million members with luxury experiences that are hand-selected by a team of 200 top travel journalists. The large and steady growing membership numbers of both luxury hotel booking sites make one particular fact very apparent: Luxury travel is in demand.
Guests are no longer satisfied with a chocolate treat on their pillow. Four or five stars are not as relevant as they once were, unless you can back them up with outstanding reviews, a set of exceptional amenities and high-tech facilities. In an age of the millennials where online booking and meta-search engines are now an integral part of travel prep, travellers are more sophisticated and informed than ever. 2014 research reveals that 148.3 million travel bookings are made on the internet each year, with internet travel booking revenue growing by more than 73% over the past five years.
Travellers will look and find the best deal.
Travellers today compare prices, facilities, services and reviews ruthlessly in order to find exactly what they want and need.
According to TripAdvisor, 89% of travellers say that reviews are influential, and Web in Travel has found that 53% of consumers will ignore a property if reviews are unavailable.
Not only are travellers more informed, they have assumed a degree of power when it comes to the performance of a property. As a hotelier, in order to keep your property ahead of the game it is crucial you are aware of latest industry trends and developments.
The continuous rise of luxury travel is dominating 2014.
Luxury is defined as ‘a state of great comfort or elegance, especially when involving great expense’, so it is your job to create this ‘state’ for your guests.
In order to achieve this, it’s important to remember personalised and tailored experiences are key. Guests want to feel like they are settling into their home away from home, with all their little personal preferences and quirky demands catered to them at all times.
Look out for Part 2 of “Catering to the sophisticated traveller: Why all hoteliers work for a luxury hotel”. In next week’s blog post we will be drilling into exactly how hoteliers can cater for the sophisticated traveller.