For more than eight in 10 travelers around the world, according to the research, planning a family trip is a collaborative activity for the entire family, including the youngest members of the household, which the researchers call Generation Alpha.
“Despite their young age, Generation Alpha is already playing an active role in family travel inspiration and planning, and they’re influencing trip decisions for the entire family,” said Andrew Van der Feltz, senior director for Expedia Group Media Solutions.
He said Gen Alpha is expected to be more educated, wealthier and live longer than any generation before them, resulting in great potential for the travel industry. By understanding their interests and influence on family travel today and how their parents and grandparents are including them in travel discussions, said Van der Feltz, “we can better prepare for the future.”
Although final decisions are of course made by the adults, more than one-third said Gen Alpha influences family trip choices. For trips with Gen Alpha, destination selection (64%) and trip activities (57%) are leading considerations. And although budget is a consideration for most family travelers, convenience is more important than lowest price when selecting transportation and accommodations.
More than half of family travelers selected their transportation because it was the fastest option, and approximately 40% of family travelers selected their accommodations based on location and family needs.
Other key Insights of the report were:
-- Family travel planning is collaborative. Look for opportunities to make travel research and planning an interactive, fun and easy experience for the entire family, and use family-friendly content and messaging.
-- Family entertainment is incredibly important to trip researchers. Marketing content with messaging or visuals highlighting fun for all ages -- especially activities and attractions -- is an effective way to appeal to family travelers.
-- Family travelers prioritize convenience over lowest price. Lead with convenience-driven messaging, such as location or proximity to nearby attractions, transportation options and family-friendly services -- rooted in a great deal to make the booking decision even easier.
Inspiration and information come from a variety of sources. Marketers should create a multiplatform strategy and use a diverse content mix to influence family travelers throughout the purchase journey with appealing family-centric images, deals and information.
A recent example of how to do this, according to Expedia Group Media Solutions, was a campaign it did with Marival Resorts, where an interactive concierge helped visitors create holidays in Mexico. Parents and grandparents were able to choose from family-based activities over a wide range of interests, matching them with the resort that best met their needs.
You might have an issue with seven- and eight-year-olds scrolling their screens for travel ideas but is that any different -- for better or worse -- from long-ago Saturday morning cartoon marketing for cereals? Travel has become a priority for young people -- it's just that now they are even younger.