Will you be an Excited Experientialist or a Travel Tech-fluencer in 2033? Amadeus gives a snapshot of how traveller profiles will evolve over the next ten years. Olivia Palamountain reports
The report, produced by global research firm Northstar Research Partners, examines the future forces of change transforming travel, alongside emerging traveler traits, behaviours and preferences, to understand exactly what it is that travellers will want a decade from now.
It includes expert interviews, 5.8 million data points and the application of psychographic segmentation techniques to bring these profiles to life and distill four key tribes: Excited Experientialists, Memory Makers, Travel Tech-fluencers and Pioneering Pathfinders.
Traveller Tribes 2033 – the third in a series of reports that launched in 2007 – suggests many travellers will be open to new and emerging technologies and will want to travel in more sustainable ways.
But with some travellers concerned about the proliferation of technology and the increasing need for cyber-security and data privacy, the industry must work together to ensure all travellers benefit from technological advances.
Paco Pérez-Lozao Rüter, president of hospitality at Amadeus, says: “Travel is about the places we stay, the destinations we visit, the experiences we have. It’s important for many of us that when we travel we have a positive impact on the places we visit, and that is likely to increase.
“Our preferences as travellers continue to evolve, and this study gives us a glimpse into the future. We have different needs depending on the trip, who we’re traveling with and what we are looking for. The challenge for the industry is to adapt to people’s changing preferences, ensuring that destinations and places deliver what travellers want.”
The report revealed that 34 per cent of travellers think travelling in 2033 will be “the opposite” of or “very different” from what it is today. A further 26 per cent think traveling in 2033 will be “noticeably different”.
When it comes to sustainability, the survey also found that while 35 per cent of travellers say that the chance to travel in more environmentally friendly ways in 2033 excites them, 63 per cent aren’t willing to pay more for a flight with biofuel, indicating that travel companies themselves will need to take responsibility.
Four travel tribes for 2033
This group has a “try it and see” approach to life and travel. 44 per cent are without children and have a mid- to high-income job with flexible working options, which enables them to readily explore the world.
They have a “you only live once” (YOLO) approach. They are more likely than other travellers to act on instinct, making them 2033s “anti-planners”, favoring less predictable and more exciting accommodation experiences.
They are also open to technology that helps them “speed up” certain aspects of their journey, with many expecting to use artificial intelligence (AI) in the airport environment.
Say “hello” to a more simplified approach to travel – to make memories and visit places. 44 per cent of Memory Makers are aged 42 and over and are habitual in their travel behaviors. The future can be a daunting prospect for them.
They put people first and place less value on technology and sustainability, reassured by existing methods. However, despite their skepticism about technology, they are excited about virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) preview tours with the majority expected to use VR tours before purchasing a trip.
Encapsulated by today’s young business travellers with a forward-looking perspective on life, 48 per cent of this group is under the age of 32 and their perspective is symbolised by how much technology they own.
However, there is a discord when it comes to what excites and concerns them around the future of technology and travel. While many want to travel sustainably, it seems they are more conscious about sustainability options around their method of travel, rather than where they’ll be staying.
Individuals in this group live a fast-paced life, always looking for their next adventure. Their life is in full swing with 82 per cent between the ages of 23 and 41. They like to plan but are not afraid of risk and are open to new experiences.
This group is more willing than others to let sustainability influence their decisions. They will also be very comfortable using all forms of alternative payment methods in 2033, whether via cryptocurrency or within a virtual reality environment.
Jack Miles, lead researcher and senior director at Northstar, says: “Future predictions are difficult, especially in travel. This is because travel is about humans and how they think and behave – all of which are complex as people aren’t always rational.
“However, using extensive traveler research based on behavioural science and consumer psychology, expert insight from diverse fields like forecasting, technology and academia, and data-analytics, this study has uncovered many insights to help understand travelers and predict their future behaviour.
“From the importance and challenge of sustainability to the need to reassure travelers about the changing role of technology, one thing is clear, travel will continue to play a vital role in enriching our lives as we head towards 2033.”