Travel and Tourism Operators: Are you there where tourists are?
Gone are the days when travelers referred books, maps and sought first person information wherever they went. Today’s techno-savvy travelers understand that online search is prerequisite to stepping out of the house. Not only that, most of the travelers’ very conception of traveling and tourism generates with the help of internet search and website browsing.
A new study has revealed that 34% of the travelers visit search engines such as Google, Yahoo and Bing for considering vacation destination alternatives and various travel options. This is followed by the websites of specific countries with 23% of the tourists browsing through them for seeking more information. The third preference is given to online travel agencies sharing 22% of tourist enquiries.
Information Sources for Tourists
Preference and Share
Increasing number of tourists believe that internet is the best source of authentic information. Easy usability, anytime availability and sheer volume of information are pulling more tourists towards internet.
Online travel planning
Most of the tourists use internet for complete travel planning from reservations to bookings and shopping. Percentage of tourists preferring online reservations has grown more than 37% since the year 2000. As people become more and more comfortable with the internet technology, the incidents of online search are destined to shoot up faster than ever. Increasing number of travel and tourism operators are putting up their online presence with interactive websites. All this has been conducive to propel more tourists out of their houses confidently armed with relevant information.
Leisure travelers thronging internet
The percentage of tourists resorting to internet and search engines is very high among leisure travelers. About 66% of leisure travelers now use internet to plan some or the other aspect of their travel. It is a great jump from 35% in the year 2000. The number of leisure travelers seeking online reservations is reported at 56%.
However, search patterns and preferences of leisure travelers differ while selecting an airline or accommodation. Tourists searching for these travel services prefer to visit the websites of online travel agencies (42% and 31% for airlines and accommodation, respectively). About 41% of travelers are giving more importance to the websites of reputed airlines (41%), whereas such brand-specific behavior is not observed while selecting accommodation facilities. Only 21% of tourists intentionally visited reputed lodging and hotel websites. About 13% of travelers visited Meta search engines that compare fares for selecting an airline.
These statistics fortifies the fact that internet is indispensible, rather a preferred medium for searching information about travel and tourism. More and more tourists are going online for their travel and tourism needs. It is imperative for the travel and tourism industry participants to enhance their online presence and fetch more tourist traffic to their websites.