Best Western Survey Shows How Women Plan, Book and Spend for Summer Vacation
Female Travelers Put Family First When Planning Summer Vacation
“These results really drive home the many factors that women take into consideration when making travel decisions. And how important it is for them to book a summer travel trip that’s a fit for the whole family, including themselves,” said Dorothy Dowling, senior vice president of marketing and sales for Best Western International.
Significant others also top the list of who women would most want to bring on their “dream summer vacation” – with 55 percent choosing to bring their sweetie on their ideal getaway. Only 18 percent of respondents would most want to bring their children on that dream summer vacation and 6 percent would most want to take that dream summer trip by themselves.
Summer Travel Spending
When it comes to where their dollars go while traveling, the survey found women would rather spend on excitement versus relaxation. When asked what they are most likely to splurge on while on summer vacation, activities and excursions was the No. 1 choice (33 percent), followed by dining out (28 percent) and shopping (21 percent). Only 8 percent of respondents are most likely to spend extra on spa treatments.
Women are also unlikely to spend extra for travel upgrades, which could speak to the trend of expecting more value (and fewer extra charges) out of their hotel and airfare. Only 7 percent of respondents say they would be most likely to splurge on hotel upgrades and 3 percent would be most likely to pay more for upgraded transportation.
While they are unlikely to pay more for upgrades, hotel nights was the top choice (54 percent) for how women typically choose to redeem their travel rewards loyalty points. This was followed closely by airfare (52 percent), while 31 percent redeem their points for merchandise or other non-travel items.
Smartphones and Summer Travel
Nearly half (46 percent) of women with smartphones use their phone to find restaurants, attractions and shops when traveling, illustrating the growing freedom smartphones give travelers to make decisions once they’ve arrived at their destination. Female travelers are also using smartphones to share their vacation experiences, with 31 percent of respondents saying they share feedback and photos from trips on social media, while 13 percent share feedback about a hotel on user review sites.
Mobile also continues to grow as a tool for travelers on the go. Thirty-two percent of respondents use their smartphone to research their hotel options and 27 percent actually book their hotel stay via their smartphone.
Additional Survey Highlights
- Five percent of respondents say their pet influences where they travel for summer vacation, while 3 percent would choose their four legged friend as their top choice to bring on a dream summer vacation
- Only 10 percent of women would most want to bring a friend on their dream summer vacation, though that’s still ahead of their extended family (parents, in-laws, etc.) which is the choice for 6 percent of those surveyed
- While significant other is the top travel influencer amongst survey respondents as a whole, when filtering for moms specifically, kids jump to the top of that list with 64 percent saying their children influence summer travel decisions
- Nine percent of women who belong to a travel rewards or loyalty program typically redeem those points for charity donations
The Best Western Survey was conducted by Wakefield Research () among 500 U.S. women ages 18+ between April 23rd and May 1st, 2014, using an email invitation and an online survey. Quotas have been set to ensure reliable and accurate representation of the U.S. female population 18+. Results of any sample are subject to sampling variation. The magnitude of the variation is measurable and is affected by the number of interviews and the level of the percentages expressing the results. For the interviews conducted in this particular study, the chances are 95 in 100 that a survey result does not vary, plus or minus, by more than 4.4 percentage points from the result that would be obtained if interviews had been conducted with all persons in the universe represented by the sample.
ABOUT BEST WESTERN INTERNATIONAL, INC.
Best Western International, Inc., headquartered in Phoenix, Ariz., is a privately held hotel brand made up of more than 4,000* BEST WESTERN®, BEST WESTERN PLUS®, BEST WESTERN PREMIER®hotels in more than 100* countries and territories worldwide. Now celebrating 68 years of hospitality, Best Western welcomes hundreds of thousands of guests nightly. Best Western provides its hoteliers with global operational, sales, marketing and promotional support, and online and mobile booking capabilities. More than 20 million travelers are members of the brand’s award-winning loyalty program program Best Western Rewards®, one of the few programs in which members earn points that never expire and can be redeemed at any Best Western hotel worldwide. The brand’s partnerships with AAA/CAA, Minor League Baseball, and Harley-Davidson® provide travelers with exciting ways to interact with the brand. In 2013, Best Western earned our highest level of brand recognition, including our fifth AAA/CAA Hotel Partner of the Year award, second Compuware Best of the Web Gold award, fourth No. 1 ranking in Brand Keys Consumer Loyalty Engagement Index for midscale hotels and seventh TTG Asia Best Mid-range Hotel Brand. Forty-one percent of Best Western hotels worldwide won TripAdvisor Certificates of Excellence for customer satisfaction.
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*Numbers are approximate and may fluctuate.