Travelport’s newest research What Consumers Want showed that consumers want the travel industry to get modern. It revealed multiple gaps that explain the lacking trust customers have in travel retailers, namely the lack of simplified and intuitive experiences, easy support and transparency.
For the travel industry, this insight offers valuable considerations and opportunities to generate more sales and customer loyalty.
“The travel industry is poised to build on the goodwill it earned during the pandemic by getting modern and giving consumers the simple, easy and supportive experience they expect,” said Jen Catto, chief marketing officer at Travelport.
“Now that the industry is recovering, there is an enormous opportunity for travel brands to reinvest in their customer experiences, earning them customer loyalty while increasing their revenue simultaneously. It’s a win-win.”
Time and transparency prioritised over price
Supporting the belief that “time is money”, Travelport’s study confirmed consumers spend more time online searching rather than buying – consulting reviews, seeking recommendations, and looking into other factors of what an offer includes.
The study revealed that the majority (69%) of consumers research a purchase online daily or weekly, with very few (only 2%) stating that they never research a purchase online.
Travelport also found that nearly all consumers (93%) believe that the best modern retailers make it easy for them to find exactly what they want. With various options available for every aspect of a trip, this is particularly crucial for travel retailers.
Full transparency is what most consumers (90%) desire most, meaning modern retailers must share full product information upfront in order to help consumers save time and gain confidence in their purchases. Doing so will pay off for retailers. In fact, most respondents (59%) said that getting exactly what they want is more important than how much they pay for it.
Even Gen Z wants convenient, human-led customer support
Most study respondents (77%), regardless of age, have interacted with a chatbot. However, just a quarter of theoretical “digital natives” – those aged 18 to 41 – use them frequently. Three quarters of all respondents prefer to speak with a human (via chat or phone) when something goes wrong, but what was unexpected is that more (83%) of younger consumers aged 18-41 actually want more human support than their elders, age 42 and above.
Furthermore, consumers in this study shared that importance of easy returns and exchanges (43%), filtered options (40%) and personalised offers (29%). These factors clearly indicate more personal support is valued at every stage of the retail journey, from research to purchase and post-purchase experiences.
Consumers will travel longer, spend more for sustainability
Climate change and sustainability are top of mind for consumers, especially those with a passion for travel. Travelport’s study revealed that nearly half of consumers (49%) would choose to spend more and even more (60%) would take longer, indirect transport routes to their destination to save on carbon emissions when travelling. This varies by age group, as the study results show (33%) of consumers aged 18-41 would travel two to three hours longer to save on carbon emissions, compared to only (19%) of consumers aged 42 and older.