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Millennials Travel Statistics & Trends 2019

 

Explore Travel Trends & Stats On Destinations, Habits, Booking, Spending & Everything Else In Between!

 

Millennials represent the largest generation to date, making up 31.5% of the world’s population at 7.7 billion, according to Bloomberg. This generation have an estimated $200 billion of spending power, certainly a compelling financial reason to pay attention to them for travel companies.

 

As you’ll see from the data below, they are reshaping how travel works by focusing on experiences and culture, solo travel, planning their own itineraries, ignoring cheap stock content and drawing their decision and influence from social media or user-generated content. What’s more, all of these new travel trends are done directly on their smartphone, from research to booking.

 

 

VITAL MILLENNIAL TRAVEL TREND STATISTICS:

 

Millennials spent $200 billion on travel in 2018, 33% plan a spending budget of $5000+ on their vacations.

66% of millennials book their trip using a smartphone. 74% use it to research.

82% of millennials travelled last year, compared with 75% of all other generations.

69% take more trips over weekends, compared to different generations at 13%.

Millennials took 5.6 trips per year, compared with 4.4 (Gen-Z), 4.0 (Gen x) and 3.5 (Boomers).

Their last trip took 6.2 days, compared with 6.6 (Gen-Z),6.4 (Gen x) and 7.8 (Boomers).

Experience economy: 86% of millennials chose new culture over 44% who wanted to party and 28% wanting to shop.

87% use Facebook to inspire their booking, and over 50% used Pinterest or Twitter.

97% will share travel experiences on social media, with 2 in 3 posting once a day.

58% of millennials stated they would solo travel, and 26% already have.

44% of millennials with children have travelled together, of which  62% did so with children under five years old.

 

 

TOURISM & MILLENNIAL TRAVEL DESTINATION STATISTICS

Where do Millennials travel?

There is little data on the specific global destination volumes for this age group, only trends which we show below. When looking at the information on a global scale, Wikipedia shows the order of popular travel destinations for every generation in order from 1-10 being: France, Spain, United States, China, Italy, Turkey, Mexico, Germany, Thailand, and United Kingdom.

 

According to the Independent, these are trending millennial travel destinations listed below:

Top 10 Millennial Travel Destinations

Trending Up

 

  • Bora Bora (+24%)
  • Saint Martin (+21%)
  • Aspen, Colorado (+18%)
  • Denpasar, Indonesia (+16%)
  • Kahului, Hawaii (+16%)
  • Dublin, Ireland (+13%)

Top 10 Millennial Travel Destinations

Trending Down

 

  • Frankfurt, Germany (+17%)
  • Managua, Nicaragua (+16%)
  • Toronto, Canada (+12%)
  • Santiago, Dominican Republic (+12 %)
  • Bogota, Colombia (+11%)

City breaks have soared by 82% since 2004, now 22% of all global holidays.

40% aim to visit a resort with a beach in the next 12 months.

38% plan to visit a metropolitan city in the next 12 months.

Travel in the US is very different. Millennials favourite travel destinations are typically 79% domestic. However, 1 in 3 are planning international vacations in the next two years.

USA: Yearly, 51% of millennials expect to travel to both domestic and international destinations, 42% plan to only travel domestic, and 7% international only.

USA: 79% of millennial travel was domestic only in the US

USA: In 24 months, 33% are planning international trips.

MILLENNIALS TRAVEL SPENDING STATISTICS

How much do millennials spend on travel?

US Millennials spent $200 billion on travel in 2018.

33% plan a spending budget of $5000+ on their vacations.

72% want to spend on travel experiences rather than physical possessions next year.

55% want to increase the volume of trips next year.

On average, excluding airfare, US millennials spent $1,373 on summer vacations.

46% of millennials spend on business flights, compared to Gen x 34%, Boomers 16%, Silent 1%.

Millennials are the most likely age group to transcend into debt for travel.

In 2018, US Millennials spent $200 billion on travel, 55% wanted to increase the volume of trips and almost 3 in 4 wanted to increase their spend on travel experiences, rather than physical products - this is a good enough reason to pay attention to marketing towards that generation. In fact, Boston Consulting Group’s research found that millennial business travel spending is projected to grow to nearly 50% of the whole business flight market in 2020. More data shows that the general travel trend of this generation is increasing as they are booking more trips, we can expect to see millennials spending more money on travel in the future.

 

Industry data also shows that 33% of millennials travel spending budgets are typically around $5000+ a year. Even though they take more trips per year, they’re not the biggest spenders by far, with $1,373 being the average summer vacation budget minus airfares. Baby Boomers will spend $1,865, and Generation X will spend $2,628 on their summer vacation.

EXPERIENCE ECONOMY TRAVEL STATISTICS

Why do millennials love travel so much?

According to the latest data, this generation has moved away from being a stereotypical tourist. Data shows that 86% of millennials travel for experience and culture, immersing themselves into their destination, staying clear of tourist traps – 60% ranks authentic culture as the essential part of their trip, 78% wanted their visit to be educational.

86% of millennials chose new culture over 44% who wanted to party and 28% want to shop as their reason for travelling.

60% ranked authentic culture as the most vital part of the entire travel experience.

78% want their travel to be educational and learn something.
Compared to other generations, millennials are 13% more likely to seek travel destinations with historical or cultural importance.

Compared to other generations, thrill chasing millennials are twice as likely to do something dangerous for excitement.
62% are likely to lengthen their business trips on the pursuit of culture.

Itinerary creation through online travel agents has seen a decline from 50% to 25% in two years, and more millennials plan their own trips.

If travel destinations want to capture part of this generation's $200 billion a year travel market, they will have to enhance their experiential offering. Now, these destinations need to thrive with cultural experiences like music festivals, nightlife and dance parties, food, and art to increase the volume of millennials who like to travel.

 

This adventure-seeking doesn’t stop with activities. This generation also wants to heighten their experience with planning their own trips. Online travel agents reported a decline in this age group using itinerary services from 50% to 25%. Furthermore, they’re slowly ditching hotels to use direct person to person accommodation via sites like Airbnb.

 

Why do millennials travel so much? Mostly because this generation has fewer responsibilities, such as having families. They take more short breaks, and 62% extend business travel to experience culture.

MILLENNIALS: FRIENDS, FAMILY & SOLO TRAVEL STATISTICS

How do millennials travel, group, or solo?

58% of millennials stated they would solo travel, and 26% already have.

26% of millennial women have done solo travel, 27% haven’t but would consider it.

40% of travellers will take a holiday with friends in the next 12 months.

58% favour travelling with friends, compared to other generations at 38%.

44% of millennials with children have gone together, of which 62% did so with children under five years old.

49% regularly take last-minute trips, 69% of which regret not taking last-minute vacations.

75% want to increase the amount they travel abroad, compared to other generations at 52%

69% had more trips over weekends, compared to different generations at 13%.

The travel trends in this statistic roundup, particularly in the experience economy section, show that this generation’s travel is different. With social media being a pivotal influence, today’s millennial travel habits show a thirst for learning, experience, culture, and knowledge - they want to satisfy their wanderlust, and over 58% have no problem doing it solo.

 

Sources: InternetMarketingInc, PRNewswire, Resonanceco, AccessDevelopment, Winspireme

MILLENNIAL SOCIAL MEDIA TRAVEL STATISTICS

How does social media impact booking trips?

87% use Facebook to inspire their booking, and over 50% used Pinterest or Twitter.

97% will share travel experiences on social media, with 2 in 3 posting once a day while away.

40% of internationally traveling millennials confess they want to create an idealized version of themselves on social media.

79% took friends advice on destinations and booked based on those recommendations.

84% are influenced to book of user-generated content (reviews, forums, comments).

Born between the 1980s and 2000s, this generation grew up to rely on social media to record their day-to-day lives, with the internet playing a pivotal role in decision making.

 

As you’ll see from the data above, 87% use it to inspire their booking options, making social media a key driver for travel research and decision making. 97% will post about their holiday on a day to day basis, influencing their friends of vacation choices when selecting their own trips.

 

Forward-thinking destinations and resorts have started introducing ‘Selfie Stations’ – an innovative method of building ‘sharable experiences‘ encouraging people to take photos and upload them tagging the location This is an excellent way for getting seamless social exposure without requesting and coming across desperate and intrusive.

 

Sources: LSB, InternetMarketingInc, Sitereminder

MILLENNIALS TRAVEL TECHNOLOGY STATISTICS

How do millennial travelers use their smartphone?

66% of millennials book their travel using a smartphone.

74% use their smartphone to research their holiday or trip.

75% have installed travel apps on their smartphone, compared with other generations at 47%.

86% are disappointed by the experience online travel agents provide on a mobile device.

If you haven’t already guessed it, when it comes to researching, planning, booking, and recording a millennials trip, the smartphone is the center of it all. In a generation that grew up with mobile phones, two in three book their travel on their phone, almost three in four use it to research and have specific travel apps installed.

 

Technology changes the way we check-in and out of hotels, flights as well as navigating us around a foreign location, booking restaurants and experiences in our itinerary - reshaping travel and shopping habits abroad for younger generations.

 

Sources: LSB, InternetMarketingInc

MILLENNIALS TRAVEL TRENDS: BEHAVIOR & REASONING

Why do millennials travel so much?

55% go to relax from ordinary life, 50% take trips to visit people, 45% to spend time with family, and 34% travel for a romantic getaway.

34% of young millennials travel to experience more from life, 23% to befriend other travelers.

25% of millennial families plan to go international with their vacations.

72% have set a target for a dream holiday sometime in their future.

When examining and surveying this generation, there was a clear pattern in booking that can be identified by three core drivers: activities, destination, and trip length.

 

A study by New Horizons back in 2017 found that the more activities and experiences that are packed into a trip increased happiness, this hits a peak on trips lasting one month or more. Travel destinations that brought the most joy involved locations like Indonesia, Mexico, Japan, and Peru.

 

Why millennials should travel: Industry insights show that going away for a long time in a different part of the world leads to higher levels of happiness among those surveyed. In general, anyone traveling outside of their local region is happier than people staying in close vicinity to their home.

 

Sources: Sitereminder, InternetMarketingInc

MILLENNIAL BOOKING & ONLINE TRAVEL AGENT STATISTICS

How do millennials book travel?

Millennial booking preferences: 57% of online travel agents, 36% of hotel websites, 32% of airline sites.

61% of query travel providers, agents, and opinion sites throughout the research phase of booking.

50% use social networks, friends, and family to consult their travel options.

85% will check more than one site for exclusive deals before confirming their booking.

23% chose online travel agents by user-friendly design and security over price.

13% think using online travel agents isn’t as safe as booking direct.

52% use review websites, travel forums, and blogs to research and validate potential options

As detailed in our experience economy section, travel desires have shifted from physical activities to emotion or feeling related experiences for this generation. This has resulted in our subject audience, turning to those who’ve done it and can validate their booking choices. 

 

Over 50% of all consumers surveyed use social media, review sites, friends, and family to consult on their booking choices in the travel research stage.

 

Do millennials use travel agents? Growing up in an era of Kayak, Expedia and Booking.com make travel agents seem like an archaic approach, but the industry is still thriving. When it comes to millennials and travel agents, 61% turned to both online and offline providers to help plan their culture and experience centered vacations.

 

Sources: Sitereminder, InternetMarketingInc

MILLENNIAL HOTEL TRENDS & STATISTICS

How do millennials use hotel booking and rewards?

58% favour hotels with full service, 11% prefer Airbnb and owner direct services.

35% will seek premium hotels and resorts for an upmarket experience.

2 in 5 millennials admit the hotel and travel images on social media influence their booking.

41% joined a loyalty program through the ease of use, 68% will stick with programs that offer the best rewards.

Hotel loyalty schemes are at an all-time high, 75% stuck with their brand even if points expired.

Major hotel chains have been putting a big focus on their reward or loyalty schemes to entice young travelers into booking direct. As mentioned in our spending statistics, millennial business travel spending is projected to grow to nearly 50% of the whole business flight market in 2020 – capturing these customers can keep them coming back to spend points on their bookings as well.

 

Using online travel agents can get hotels their first booking quickly, but a robust loyalty scheme will get the repeat bookings for the hotel and maximize the margins for that business. If consumers are happy with the programs, word of mouth can generate even more bookings with colleagues, friends, and family.

 

Hotels can also benefit off embracing spontaneity. Limited time discounts, one night only deals and flash sales can draw in new business through the millennials spontaneous nature.

 

Sources: Sitereminder, InternetMarketingInc

WISH LIST: HOLIDAY BOOKING SERVICE STATISTICS

What services do the younger generation want from the travel industry?

68% want a service that will let them split the cost of their travel with others on the booking.

50% of travelers rate customer service via instant messaging above face-to-face.

2 in 3 would like a service that will suggest holidays based firstly on their personality, then budget.

16% would disclose personal data in exchange for discounts, but 57% would if the service provided personalised holidays, tips, and advice.

60% plan to purchase extras to upgrade their experience

36% approved of automated check-ins, compared to a lower 19% from other generations

When looking to develop new technologies for the younger generations, here are some key millennial marketing statistical takeaways surrounding their desires:

 

  • Social Media: By listening to the interactions and conversations going on, you can try to get your brand to mimic their language and become the helpful OTA they’re looking for to validate their decisions.
  • Smartphones: 74% use them to research, 66% book on them, and 86% are not happy with the user experience. Smash this on your app or website, and you’ll see great results.
  • Rewards: Loyalty schemes that offer VIP upgrades or money offer are precisely what millennials want, they brag about it and keep coming back as long as you make it simple.
  • Authenticity: Cover your website and social media channels in user-generated content. By not speaking at them and being part of the conversation with real photos and a friendly ton you can stop them searching elsewhere for UGC confirmation.

Sources: Sitereminder, InternetMarketingInc