Much as the travel industry talks about a utopian vision of the digital future of travel, consumers still want the best fares when it comes to online travel, now and in the future. And they want it without having to hunt on dozens of sites, like now. Is the travel industry listening?
When the travel industry talks about the future of travel, it brings visions of esoteric digital nirvana of all kinds. Wearables, mobile-first, seamless booking, and of course, space travel, buzzwords galore. But the reality is a lot more mundane. And practical.
Skift + Amadeus decided to ask the the hardcore, online-only travel bookers in United States about their views on what’s most important to them when it comes to the future of online booking.
The results were eye-opening.
The future of online travel booking borrows a lot what the present is, with some key extras added. At least that’s what users told us.
We’ve outlined the top-level results, as well as differences by demographics, below.
Important: This single-question survey was administered to the U.S. internet population from June 2-3, 2014 through Google Consumer Surveys, with a qualifying question with 1,808 responses. The primary question was served to 522 regular online-only travel bookers. The methodology is explained here. See previous Skift Surveys here.
» Topline Result (Chart 1, below): A huge majority of online bookers said that finding the best prices and fares is still the important thing they want in the future as online travel booking evolves. This is the biggest disruption online travel brought along with Internet first took off, where consumers could get access to cheap fares on their own terms.
One interesting addition: online bookers are looking to book trips on a single website instead of shopping around numerous websites, as online users do now.
Another interesting contra-result: While the travel industry talks a lot about personalization and using user behavior data to serve better results, consumers think that’s the least important part of what they want from the future of online booking. Likely, the result of enhanced understanding of online privacy issues these days.
» Breakdown by gender, Chart 2 below: Men, by a slight margin, want better mobile booking solutions in the future.
»Breakdown by age, Chart 3 below: As you would expect, the younger generation wants better mobile travel solutions a lot more than any other age group.
» Breakdown by region, Chart 4 below: The U.S. North Easterners want better mobile travel solutions than any other region in U.S., though hard to call it a big difference from others.
» Breakdown by region, Chart 4 below: The rural American online travel bookers, an oft-ignored demographic, are very focused on finding cheap fares in the future.
» Breakdown by income, Chart 5 below: Surprise, surprise, the richer you are, the more you care about the fares!
This content is created collaboratively in partnership with our sponsor, Amadeus.