Travel Marketing Budgets 2016: 5 Must-Watch Digital Trends [Infographic]

 Just as travelers plan their trips to make the most of their stays, travel marketing experts need to plan their digital budgets and strategies to make the most of their spend. But with a new year come new choices, channels, and chances for online success.

To make the best digital decisions, travel marketers need to know the top trends, tech, and tactics that will matter to marketing in 2016. Rather than track down all of this data, your ticket to the latest travel insights is a fact-packed infographic created by MDG Advertising called Travel Marketing Budgets 2016: 5 Must-Watch Trends.

It pinpoints the five key strategies for making the most of your travel marketing budget and business over the next 12 months. To arrive at the right budget decisions, check out this informative infographic.

1. Spend on Your Website

Investing in your website is one of the wisest decisions you can make. With more and more people looking and booking on travel brand websites than third-party sites, your website delivers the first impression of your travel brand. And an optimized, user-friendly website can create a lasting impression and drive visitors to book without a second thought. The infographic shows:67% of travellers think it’s simpler to book on a travel brand website than a third-party site.

Almost two-thirds of travellers think it’s less expensive to book on a travel brand website.

Top Takeaway: To make the most of this mind-set, view your website as an important digital hub that gives online users everything they want and need.

2. Optimize MobileMobile has become a must in people’s lives, especially when researching and reserving travel. In 2016, even more travellers will be searching for travel online. According to the infographic, you can expect: 49% increase in mobile search for hotels and cruises. 47% rise in mobile search for car rentals and tours and attractions.

Top Takeaway: To serve this mobile market, make sure that all of your digital offerings, experiences, and communications are optimized for every mobile device.

3. Expect to Welcome More Millennials

Millennials already make up 40% of leisure travellers who book travel online. In 2016, their share of both the business and personal travel market will increase even more. To target these young adults, it’s essential to understand that Millennials have specific travel tendencies, such as:  They frequently book travel and share their experiences on mobile devices and digital platforms.

They tend to extend and blend business trips into personal vacations.

They spend more each day on trips than other age groups.

Top Takeaway: Use these Millennial insights to develop your digital properties and target your online messages.

4. Revisit Reviews

In 2016, online reviews and review sites will matter more than ever to travellers. According to the infographic:64% of travellers visit travel review sites like TripAdvisor for vacation ideas.

Almost half of travellers have been compelled to write a review after a travel experience.

Top Takeaway: Since these reviews are so important, travel brands need to regularly revisit and review all guest reviews to learn what they liked and lacked in their experiences.

5. Keep Your Eye on Video

Digital video is becoming more and more popular with travellers, especially on social networks. The infographic reveals these stunning statistics:

Top Takeaway: In 2016, video is a vital investment that must be incorporated with social media to reach and resonate with travellers.

 

Source: Travel Marketing Budgets 2016: 5 Must-Watch Digital Trends [Infographic]

2014 Airline Ancillary Revenue Activity Surpasses $38 Billion, Up Nearly 21 Percent

CarTrawler Yearbook of Ancillary Revenue by IdeaWorksCompany  compiles disclosures from 63 airlines worldwide

The 2015 CarTrawler Yearbook of Ancillary Revenue by IdeaWorksCompany, now available free online, provides the most detailed global assessment of a bottom-line-booster that can represent 38.7% of a carrier’s revenue, as it does for Spirit Airlines in the US, or $56.28 per passenger for Jet2.com in the UK, and $5.86 billion for global behemoth United Airlines.  

This excellent full 98-page report examines 63 airlines that disclosed revenue in financial filings during 2014 from sources such as frequent flier miles sold to partners, fees for checked bags, and commissions from car rentals.

Click the links below to read the 6-page press release or to view the entire 98-page yearbook.  

6-page press release:  www.ideaworkscompany.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Press-Release-100-Ancillary-Revenue-Yearbook.pdf

2015 CarTrawler Yearbook of Ancillary Revenue by IdeaWorksCompany:  www.ideaworkscompany.com/category/current-reports

 

 

The Week in Travel Stats: Learn Where Your Clients Could Be Headed Next | Travel Agent Central

The Week in Travel Stats: Learn Where Your Clients Could Be Headed Next | Travel Agent Central.

From last-minute summer road trips to a look at which destinations are trending right now, the week in travel stats provided a good glimpse into what’s hot in travel for the rest of the year.

U.S., Spain Top Most-Searched Destinations in Q2

This week travel marketing platform Sojern released a look at the most-searched destinations of the second quarter of 2015, an indicator of where travelers are looking to book at the moment.

The United States and Spain were the most-searched destinations, followed by Italy, the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Portugal, Turkey, Greece and Russia. The latter re-entered the list after a quarter’s hiatus, replacing Thailand.

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Beyond the top 10, here are the destinations that captured the most traveler interest by region since summer 2014:

In North America, Haiti moved up 34 ranks since summer 2014, after experiencing a dramatic decline in tourism in the aftermath of the 2010 earthquake, followed by Iceland, up 11 spots.

For travelers from Western Europe, Cuba pushed up 12 places to position 41, thanks to a lot of media attention and the detente with the U.S. Czech Republic, Iceland and Romania each moved seven places up in the ranking.

In Latin America, Aruba’s appeal increased over last year, pushing it up 11 spots, followed, by Hungary, up 10 spots. The latter is one of the more affordable European destinations, as a non-Eurozone country.

In Southeast Asia, Bangladesh moved up eight spots and Qatar seven since summer 2014.

For travelers from the Middle East, Sudan gained the most popularity (up 24 spots), followed closely by Bosnia and Herzegovina (21 spots), a country which the World Tourism Organization estimates will have the third highest tourism growth rate in the world by 2020.

Read more

Top Restaurants for Last-Minute Summer Road Trips

Even as we head into August, clients could still be looking to take one last summer road trip. OpenTable has released its 2015 Summer Road Trip Restaurant Guide highlighting top eateries for your clients to visit.

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Compiled by OpenTable insiders across the nation, the guide highlights culinary destinations along some of the country’s most popular road trip routes.

The OpenTable 2015 Summer Road Trip Restaurant Guide includes more than 100 restaurants, from Grace in Portland, Maine, to Meriwether’s Restaurant & Skyline Farm in Portland, Oregon. OpenTable’s regional teams around the United States curated the guide.

Source: OpenTable

1 in 4 Business Travelers Can’t Use Ride Share Services

This week also saw a flurry of research into the world of business travel from the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) Convention 2015.

As part of a panel discussion at the event, the GBTA Foundation released a new report on the future of ground transportation in the sharing economy. Key takeaway: With one in four business travelers barred from using new ride share services, rental cars and taxis remain the most commonly used methods of ground transportation among business travelers.

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“Our research shows one in four (24 percent) travel buyers say their company does not allow their business travelers to use ride-sharing companies, by far the highest percentage for any form of ground transportation,” said GBTA Executive Director and COO Michael W. McCormick. “In addition, a large number of companies still have not adopted policies around ride-sharing companies, revealing a need for education about the benefits and the risks. GBTA hopes this study is the start to closing that knowledge gap and we welcome an open and constructive dialogue on this topic.”

Read more

Business Travel Spending to Hit Record High of $1.25 Trillion in 2015

Another report from the GBTA Convention brought some good news for business travel. Driven by a surge in China, business travel spending is expected to hit a record high of $1.25 trillion in 2015.

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Despite recent economic turbulence, China business travel will increase by 61 percent over the next five years, from $261 billion in 2014 to $420 billion in 2019. That increase is greater than the increases in business travel growth in the next 8 largest countries combined, including the U.S., Germany, India, U.K., Indonesia, France, Turkey and Japan.

“Despite recent economic speedbumps, China will pull away as the global leader in business travel over the next five years,” said McCormick. “On the horizon, we’ve identified five nations that are also seeing extraordinary growth and could very well turn into the business travel markets of the future. Another market to watch is India, which is statistically where China was 15 years ago.”

Amadeus and Southwest Airlines advance partnership with new corporate travel agreement – MarketWatch

amadeus new logo on blueAmadeus and Southwest Airlines advance partnership with new corporate travel agreement

Amadeus, a leading technology partner for the global travel industry and Southwest Airlines announced today a new milestone in their partnership. Under a new multi-year agreement, Amadeus’ corporate travel booking tool users around the world will gain access to Southwest’s fares and inventory.

“Providing seamless functionality and booking ease to our corporate customers worldwide is a focus we share with Amadeus,” said Kevin Krone, Vice President Marketing and Chief Marketing Officer, Southwest Airlines. “This new global agreement marks another milestone in our continued partnership, offering a new dimension in distribution to deliver world-class access to our entire available inventory of seats to more than 90 destinations.”

With the direct implementation of Southwest’s content, users of Amadeus’ e-Travel Management and i:FAO’s cytric corporate booking tools will gain benefits such as:

  • Greater functionalities including live availability and last seat inventory delivered via an integrated display
  • Functionality supporting all pricing rules, fare rules and return of ticket number
  • Fare searches returning the lowest fares available
  • Booking and ticketing capabilities for the carrier’s loyalty program/Rapid Rewards members
  • Additional functionality related to deferred ticketing, retrieving and canceling reservations, and exchange funds toward new itineraries

via Amadeus and Southwest Airlines advance partnership with new corporate travel agreement – MarketWatch.

Airlines ranked for their speed at replying to people on Twitter | Mail Online

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When a delay of just a few minutes can destroy a traveller’s entire itinerary, Twitter has become the go to place for many air passengers to keep abreast of changes to their travel plans – or air their grievances.Now a new study has revealed the most efficient and responsive airlines on the microblogging service.According to US travel intelligence site Skift, European airlines trail their US counterparts when it comes to responding to customer needs on Twitter.

Top Tweeters

Top five US airlines

American Airlines    12 minutes
JetBlue Airways       15 minutes
IndiGo                      16 minutes
US Airways              38 minutes
Air Canada              42 minutes 

Top five European airlines

Ryanair                     66 minutes
Lufhansa                  72 minutes
KLM                          93 minutes
easyJet                   120 minutes
SAS                         191 minutes

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/travel/article-2585112/Twitter-users-airlines-speedier-others.html#ixzz2wblb6c82
Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

via Airlines ranked for their speed at replying to people on Twitter | Mail Online.

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Why Online Video Matters for Airline Marketing – Skift

English: Westjet 737-700 landing at Montréal-P...

Skift launch a new report

The spread of online video has affected marketing for almost every business-to-consumer industry, but it is particularly important to a commoditized and opaque business such as airlines.“I think that you see more and more content coming from airlines because it’s a unique business with such a big cost structure,” says Corey Evans, who manages sponsorship and community investment for WestJet, the Canadian airline known for its extravagant videos. “Most customers’ attitude to look for the lowest fare, no matter what. When you are in a dead heat with competitors, content could be the differentiating factor. It builds brand awareness and lets people know about how we treat our guests and our corporate social responsibility efforts.”Especially as travelers increasingly use online travel agents or meta search engines where multiple airlines’ prices can be com- pared side-by-side, engaging content could differentiate one from the next.

via Why Online Video Matters for Airline Marketing – Skift.

English: Westjet 737-700 landing at Montréal-P…

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O’Leary reveals Ryanair-Google plan to ‘change how we buy tickets forever’ – Independent.ie

English: Michael O'Leary

English: Michael O’Leary (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

INTERNET giant Google is working on top-secret plans with Michael O’Leary’s Ryanair in a bid to completely transform how consumers search for, select and buy airline tickets.

O’Leary reveals Ryanair-Google plan to ‘change how we buy tickets forever’ – Independent.ie.

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Budget air travel catching on in China|Markets|Business|WantChinaTimes.com

Budget carriers in China are gaining growing accpetance among passengers, quietly altering the landscape of China\’s air travel market.

The growing popularity of budget airlines has spawned a number of dedicated airports in Asia, such as the LCCT (Low Cost Carrier Terminal) situated south of Kuala Lumpur. The airport looks more like a bus terminal than an airport, without luxury goods stores, VIP lounges or the other usual outlets and facilities seen at larger airports.

Guangzhou\’s 21st Century Business Review noted that low-cost air travel is catching on in Asia, attracting growing numbers of passengers, especially young people who complain of high air fares and aren\’t overly concerned with service standards. Air Asia, a Malaysian budget carrier, is enjoying booming business in the Chinese market.

\”Even during the period when the SARS epidemic was ravaging Asia, we still saw a high level of demand,\” remarked Siegtraund The Siew Foong, chief commercial officer of Air Asia. Tony Fernandes, Air Asia founder and CEO, said the low-price strategy is effective and enjoys extensive demand in Asia.

A PR official from Air Asia said the airline formulates quarterly marketing plans three to six months in advance, which incorporate weekly marketing drives as well as various incentives tied to the passenger load of flights. Some 20 budget airlines including Air Asia, Tiger Air, Lion Air and Cebu Pacific have become popular names on China\’s travel websites in recent years. Twelve of these are less than 15 years old.

21st Century Business Review noted that more and more passengers have used budget airlines to fly to destinations in Southeast Asia, which has become the major destination for overseas travel for Chinese tourists.

via Budget air travel catching on in China|Markets|Business|WantChinaTimes.com.

Ryanair unveils new digital marketing strategy and improvements to customer service | Travel News

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Low cost Irish carrier, Ryanair, has unveiled its new digital marketing strategy, with the launch of a new website.

The new strategy includes the deployment of social media as a marketing tool. In line with move, the Dublin-based airline has launched its new @Ryanair Twitter page, a mobile application that can also be downloaded for free from October 1.

Ryanair’s CEO, Michael O’Leary, said: ‘Our primary focus this winter will be to significantly invest in, and improve, the Ryanair.com website, our mobile platform and our interaction with passengers using social media.

‘We are pleased to remove Recaptcha from November for individual passengers, although the security feature will remain in place for high volume or multiple IP addresses in order to deter larger travel agents, screenscrapers and others who flood our website seeking fare quotes, and diminish our website’s accessibility for individual passengers.

This winter will also see a rolling programme of development to improve the Ryanair.com website, make it easier for passengers to navigate, quicker for them to locate our all-inclusive price quotes, identify availability of our lower fare promotions and book Ryanair’s great fares for themselves and their families.’

O’Leary added: ‘These improvements will be accompanied by a new digital marketing strategy which will see Ryanair switch a significant proportion of its marketing budget from old to new media, with a particular focus on mobile and social media platforms.’

via Ryanair unveils new digital marketing strategy and improvements to customer service | Travel News.

Emirates becomes the first Airline in the Middle East to use Google Now™ | Emirates United Arab Emirates

DUBAI, U.A.E., 6th August 2013: Emirates, one of the world’s fastest growing airlines today announced that it will start to roll-out Google Now™ cards for their passengers who book via Emirates.com.

A feature of the Google Search™ app, Google Now is available and fully integrated for Android™ (devices running Android 4.1 and above) and iOS (iPhones and iPads).

via Emirates becomes the first Airline in the Middle East to use Google Now™ | Emirates United Arab Emirates.