1‑in‑2 will travel more according to global mega‑report on accommodation

SiteMinder, a global open hotel commerce platform, has released the 2023 edition of "The world’s largest consumer research on accommodation" which reports that 91 per cent of travellers globally intend to travel at least the same amount as they did over the past year, including at least 1-in-2 (57 per cent) who intend to travel more.

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Additionally, the number planning to travel only internationally has more than doubled, from 20 per cent last year to 42 per cent this year.

Among travellers from the US—Canada’s largest source market—the proportion intending to travel more than last year also sits at 57 per cent. This, coupled with an increasing desire to travel internationally among travelers from the UK, France, Mexico, Germany, India and Australia—Canada’s other six leading source markets—suggests a bullish outlook for Canadian accommodation providers over the coming 12 months.

The findings are in SiteMinder’s Changing Traveller Report 2023, an analysis of more than 10,000 travellers surveyed across the US and 11 other countries, including Australia, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Mexico, Spain, Thailand and the UK. They underpin the four key traveller profiles shaping the travel plans and motivations that will impact the global accommodation industry over the coming year:

1. The enduring explorer: Committed to travelling, regardless of living costs

2. The digital dependent: Reliant on new technologies and bound to devices

3. The memory maker: Investing in experiences, in a roaring ‘20s rerun

4. The conscious collaborator: An open ally to accommodations and the community.

When it comes to accommodation, in spite of inflation, over four-fifths of American travellers say they are happy to spend money beyond the cost of their room. However, increased prices are forcing them to adapt, with cheaper rooms and package deals listed as the two most common ways they will overcome rising costs.

The finding is unsurprising given that 2-in-3 American travellers say that what they need from their accommodation has changed in the last year. A ‘great experience’ and ‘space for their family and friends’ are what Americans today want most from their accommodation and, for a quarter, it is more important now than this time last year that their accommodation provides a connection with the local culture and community.

The number of American travellers intending to work during their next trip has risen incrementally from 29 per cent last year to 31 per cent this year. Likewise, budget accommodation and camping or holiday parks have gained ground vis-a-vis big chains and resorts.

SiteMinder’s regional vice president for the Americas, Jason Lugo, says the research affirms the health of the travel sector in Canada and the critical role that local accommodation providers must play. “Our research provides strong indicators that travel over the coming year will remain steady even as travellers plan for ways to adapt to inflationary pressures,” says Lugo.

“Encouragingly for local accommodation providers, we are seeing the intent continuing to grow among travellers, especially internationally.” While almost three quarters of American travellers will be tolerant of accommodation providers having lower standards of service in light of staff shortages, a fundamental finding from SiteMinder’s Changing Traveller Report 2023 is that the accommodation sector is perceived to be lagging other industries from a technology standpoint.

Eighty-two percent of American guests think the accommodation industry is either average or behind when it comes to technology adoption, while more than half (55 per cent) agree that their booking experience and stay could be better if accommodation businesses were more tech-savvy.

SiteMinder’s research has found that technology use among travellers includes:

● AI – more than half of travellers globally, including more than two-thirds of millennials, are either likely or very likely to use AI to generate accommodation recommendations. American travellers are slightly more cautious, with only 36 per cent either likely or very likely to use AI to generate accommodation recommendations.

● Social media – almost two-thirds of US travellers, including fourth-fifths of Generation Zers, say social media influences how they discover their accommodation.

● Booking websites – while 7-in-10 American guests will arrange their accommodation by booking online, more than half (51 per cent) say they have decided not to proceed with a booking because of a bad experience. Difficult processes and websites that don’t feel secure are the top two reasons listed for this decision.

SiteMinder’s Changing Traveller Report 2023 is available here.

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