As we’ve discussed before, the average timeshare owner in the U.S. is 47 years old, putting them firmly in the “Generation X” bucket. Recognizing this, the timeshare industry and its advocates have long been searching for ways to make their product more appealing to a younger, millennial audience.
With that in mind, it’s important that industry insiders and watchdogs keep a close eye on the vacation and travel preferences of the younger generation of consumers, those who may – or may not – grow up to be the next wave of timeshare owners.
One recent study from Expedia Media Solutions, brought to our attention by Inside the Gate, helps shed some light on the tastes of not just millennials, but the younger “Gen Z,” those prime Gen X-ers, and the Baby Boomers.
Let’s take a look at some of the most interesting findings from that study, which found that, across the board, U.S. travelers are “relaxed, romantic, and embrace #YOLO:”
The post-millennial generation is just starting to travel, but they’re already doing it on their own terms. According to the Expedia study, this group spends about 25% of their travel budgets on flights, leaving them open to cheaper and alternative accommodation options. Nearly 80% of Gen Z-ers are “looking to explore the outdoors” when they travel, and 90% admit to being influenced by social media when they look for a travel destination, with an emphasis on Instagram and Snapchat.
According to this study, millennials actually travel more than any other age group, blocking out 35 days a year on average. They prefer “all-inclusive, worry-free” vacations, and their habits reflect it: 70% of millennials stayed in a hotel on their last trip (more than any other generation), and the majority use the internet to book their trips, using online travel agencies, search engines, or branded websites.
Gen X-ers travel the least of any generation, at only 26 days per year. Unlike younger consumers, they emphasize the journey, rather than the destination; as a result, 43% travel by car. These family-oriented consumers are also the most likely to seek out and be affected by advertising from vacation brands, with 90% saying that ‘they look for deals and read travel reviews before making a decision,” and 88% claiming that “informative content from destinations and travel brands can influence their decision.”
According to Expedia, Baby Boomers are “decisive travelers” who know what they want but don’t feel “tied’ to a budget. To wit: Fewer than 60% of Boomers said that budget was a primary factor influencing their travel plans, and they’re more likely than any other generation to book their travel plans or accommodations directly through hotel or airline sites, rather than via an OTA or social media.
For more interesting tidbits from this compelling study, we encourage you to read the full report over at Inside the Gate.
Led by Attorney Michael D. Finn with 50 years of experience, the Finn Law Group is a consumer protection firm specializing in timeshare law. Our lawyers understand vacation ownership as well as the many pitfalls of the secondary market of timeshare resales. If you feel you have been victimized by a timeshare company, contact our offices for a free consultation. Know your rights as a consumer and don’t hesitate to drop us a line with any questions or concerns.