Hi there everybody,
As you know, the last few years have been plagued with the negative effects of the U.S. recession. Finally, things are starting to look up. In fact, for the travel industry, data has shown that the upcoming year will be extremely profitable. According to a survey taken last month by LowFares.com, we can expect a 44% increase in the number of people planning to take a summer leisure trip this year versus last year, with nearly half of the leisure travel remaining within the U.S.
So how do boutique hotels capture this new market? According to LowFares.com, travel websites offering user reviews and articles significantly outpaced Facebook as the preferred source of vacation destination ideas, receiving 62% of the vote from summer trip planners. Vacationers rely heavily on user reviews. If boutique hotels can ensure that customers enjoy their stay enough to write about it, they are much more likely to attract new customers. And let’s not forget about the importance of social media. Many vacationers also look to social media sites when making travel plans. Facebook was the preferred source for 31% of respondents expecting to use online social media to help them select a destination.
What about business travelers? American Airlines released a survey last week indicating an increase in travel among small business owners. Approximately 86 percent of responding SMB travel managers project that their companies’ travel will either stay the same or increase up to 24 percent over the next year. Another 6 percent anticipated a travel increase of 25 percent or more over the next 12 months.
Business travelers also noted their preferred hotels include large hotel chains that have rewards allowing them to earn and redeem airline miles. Because of the enormous amount of travel, small business travelers prefer to stay at hotels that benefit them. In order to compete with large hotel chains, boutique hotels in major metropolitan city centers need to ensure they are focused on the real needs of business travelers in order to take advantage of this potentially profitable market.
This is good news for the hospitality industry. Both work and leisure travel throughout the U.S. are expected to increase over the upcoming year. And this increase in American travel provides huge opportunities for boutique hotels. While more Americans want to travel this summer, they do not want to spend more. 74% of summer trip planners expect to spend the same or less than they did in 2011. Boutique hotel’s unique offerings and cozy environments may be just what these people are looking for.
Learn more about how to attract guests to your property, how to optimize all facets of social media to promote your property, the enormous economic effects of promoting the U.S. as a travel destination as per the Travel Promotion Act, and more at the BLLA International Leadership Symposium from October 22-24 in Los Angeles!
Click here to register.
We hope you found this helpful and look forward to seeing you at the conference! Don’t forget to comment and send us your opinions and reactions to our post.
Until next time,