We’re creating a more connected travel industry, underpinned by sustainability and long-term investor relations.
Meet Jonno. He’s a young ‘millennial’ traveller who likes to live like a native. Based on our Traveller Tribes 2030 report, I describe him as a Cultural Purist.
Cultural Purists like Jonno have an extremely interesting way of travelling. To start with they gather inspiration from lifestyle media such as TV documentaries, YouTube user-generated travel videos, food and nature programmes, and blogs. They also look to books and films that share insights into a diverse and authentic travel destination. More than anything they seek to be inspired by immersive travel experiences into another way of life.
An interesting trait of Cultural Purists is that they don’t want vast amounts of data used to personalise services. In fact, they perceive personalisation of services and advertisements as roadblocks to true discovery. That is something the travel industry needs to watch out for!
This tribe will be open to new services at every moment of their journey and will not book all of their travel at the booking stage. Instead, they will book the minimal amount possible, building into their trip as much freedom as they can and making plans on the fly.
They want authentic experiences and don’t want technology to get in the way. This may extend to the ‘old school’ approach of picking up the phone and calling hotels or service providers directly or using guidebooks for inspiration. Travel agents that can provide local knowledge and off the beaten track experiences are going to be in high-demand for this tribe.
Flexibility and spontaneity are the keywords for travellers like Jonno. Travel providers should focus on delivering flexible options allowing for flight and service changes, as well as reducing the number of decisions the traveller has to make at the booking stage. It will be futile to offer ‘local’ experiences from a set menu, as these travellers will avoid any ‘corporate’ or ‘pre-packaged’ experiences. For them it’s all about ‘off-the-beaten-path.’
In this Age of Traveller Power, the sharing economy will play a big role in this tribe’s travel experience, as Cultural Purists will want to remove any barriers between themselves and locals. They will be heavy users of ‘Airbnb’ equivalents and platforms that bring travellers and sellers of local services closer together. Tripadvisor scores will carry less weight than food recommendations from local Airbnb hosts.