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Travel companies need to figure out where and when to reach their consumers on a growing number of platforms. This survey found that many tablet users are young, middle-class, and looking to book a trip one to three months ahead of departure.

With the iPad mini’s release yesterday and a new Samsung Nexus tablet to be announced next week, tablet sales are on the rise. Consumers are searching and booking vacations through mobile booking sites and apps and it’s key that hotels, airline, and online travel agents provide an easy booking experience for tablet users.

Eye for Travel’s most recent Travel Consumer Report surveyed over 8,400 travel consumers from the USA, UK, Germany, France, and The Netherlands in June 2012 to find out who was using the tablets and when they were booking trips.

The study found that the most common time for tablet users to book travel is one to three months ahead of the travel dates.

U.S. and UK travelers are the most cautious with 18 percent of respondents booking over three months in advance, while Dutch travelers are the most spontaneous with 11 percent of respondents willing to book travel within a few hours notice. Dutch travelers were also the least likely out of the five nationalities to book travel more than three months in advance.

Tablet use is most prevalent with Europeans in medium to low-medium (€25,000 – €59,000) wage brackets, but is more evenly spread out across income groups in America. British citizens with incomes between €30,000 and €49,000 have the highest concentration of tablet ownership at 38 percent. German and Dutch citizens that make more than €200,000 have the lowest concentration with less than one percent of that demographic owning a tablet.

The highest concentration of tablet ownership in each country was among middle-class respondents with an income between €20,000 to €49,000 a year. All countries had higher concentrations of tablet ownership among individuals with lower salaries.

Out of the respondents, the typical tablet user was aged between 25 and 35 years old (34 percent) and 35 to 44 years old (26 percent.) The likelihood that a respondent owned a tablet decreased as their age increased.

The study makes no references to which type of tablets are most commonly used, but travel operators targeting middle-class citizens between 25 and 45 years old in particular will benefit from a mobile website and app.

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Tags: booking, demographics, europe, tablets

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