Travel agents and tour operators will need to increase personal service and communication levels to cater for the future generations of millennials and Generation Z holidaymakers.
Generations expert Dr Eliza Filby told delegates at the 2018 Aito overseas conference that not only would the up and coming generations of clients want customised products, face to face interaction and “constant dialogue” but they would also want holidays which “chime with their values”.
Holiday prices will be less important for these ‘time poor’ millennials living in an age of information overload, she said, while having personal recommendations and trips which “reinforce their online identity” through social media such as Instagram will also be key.
Travel is also incredibly important to millennials, who are also giving birth to the next generation- Generation Alpha, added Filby. “More than baby boomers and Generation X, travel is their identity. Now they are becoming parents and many are taking multi-generation family holidays.”
Cost will be more important to the “YouTube” Generation Z clients, who also prefer peer-to-peer endorsement of products. “They are the recession generation; they are incredibly savvy and cost will be more important to them. They are serious and sceptical. Travel will also be core to their life cycle.”
Filby, who identified millennials as clients born between 1981 and 1996 and Generation Z clients as born between 1997 and 2010, said travel company bosses should also think of their millennial employees as “consumers” and use more democratic methods to run their businesses.
She warned: “Millennials will challenge you more than Generation X. They have more confidence and they want to have a say in the business. They do not want to be dictated to; gone are the days you can say: ‘this is what we are doing’.
“You need to think of your employees as ‘consumers’ because that is how they view work.”
She added that the younger generations were also less likely to stay longer than 10 years in any job, with millennials staying in the same job for three years on average.
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