MMGY: Portrait of American Travelers 2017-2018
Travel marketers focus a great deal of energy and budget on reaching affl uent households. However, there may be a flaw in how many marketers design and implement their strategy. Simply because a household earns a higher household income doesn't mean they will necessarily spend more money on vacations. From cars to furniture to home electronics to real estate, there are a wide variety of options for how affl uent Americans can choose to allocate their spending.
Furthermore, among affl uent travelers who took at least one vacation, not all are spending their discretionary income on high-end travel experiences. Said another way, not all affl uent travelers are luxury travelers. Luxury travelers – affl uent travelers who believe it's worth paying more for the very best quality for both vacation accommodations and transportation – only make up 36 percent of affl uent travelers.
This paper explores how these true luxury travelers differ from their counterparts, affl uent travelers who are simply not as vested in travel.
In addition to some important predictions about the year ahead for the luxury traveler segment, this paper will delve into what motivates these travelers to vacation and their preferred travel service providers. Furthermore, we will assess the impact of social media and online reviews on the luxury traveler's decision-making process.
Not All Affluent Travelers are Luxury Travelers
- Luxury Travelers who believe it's worth paying more for the very best quality in accommodations and transportation only make up 36% of affluent travelers. During the past 12 months, luxury travelers spent a household average of $10,078 on leisure travel, which equates to 62% more on travel than affluent travelers.
- 31% of luxury travelers plan on taking more vacations during the next 12 months.
Luxury Travelers Value Memories Over Purchases
- Over the past 12 months, 76% of luxury travelers prefer to focus on making memories over acquiring more things, while only 57% of affluent travelers feel the same.
- 42% of luxury travelers say that memories of childhood vacations influence current vacation decisions.
- While luxury travelers do frequent traditional travel service providers, they're also significantly more likely than affluent travelers to try sharing economy alternatives.
- 32% of luxury travelers used share economy accommodations during past 12 months.
Social Media & Online Reviews Are Influencing Luxury Behavior
- One third of luxury travelers have selected a vacation destination based at least in part on what they've seen on social media, compared to only 7 percent of affluent travelers.
- 51% of luxury travelers like using social media to share travel experiences.
Senior account director - NJF, an MMGY Global Company
About MMGY Global
MMGY Global is the largest integrated travel marketing organization in the world. With more than 35 years of experience in the travel, hospitality and entertainment industries, the award-winning agency provides expertise in all marketing channels, serving the world"s premier travel and tourism brands. MMGY Global maintains the industry's most complete database of U.S. resident travel information and, for 27 consecutive years, has published the Portrait of American Travelers®, the most comprehensive survey of the travel habits, preferences and intentions of Americans. Today, the organization represents six offices across the globe and four agency brands including MMGY, DK Shifflet, Myriad International Marketing and NJF. Visit mmgyglobal.com for more information.