Time to shape-up: How travel retailers can woo the next generations of empowered travellers

Pascale Caron

Associate Director, Segment Strategy, Pre-Sales & Consulting, Global Customer Group, Amadeus IT Group

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Most of Generation Y and Generation Z have never set foot in a physical travel agency before. And why should they? They are digital natives. New generations want to be informed, inspired by real experiences – not by glossy brochures with ‘photo shopped’ imagery—and to have a full emotional experience. Most importantly, they want to be in control of their decisions and make smart choices, while having it all at their fingertips.

Our latest research paperaims to help travel retailers with physical stores target younger generations (under 30 years old) who have never been in a travel agency retail shop before, with a view to entice them to do so. It also seeks to bring a new perspective on the travel retail world with innovative ideas.

We’re witnessing some interesting developments, particularly in the online world, where players want to be in direct contact with their travellers. In turn, travellers, are driving change and forcing providers to evolve their business models to meet new challenges.

Travel retailers are evolving and becoming more ‘humanised’. The job no longer stops with the sale of a ticket or a package; it’s time to rethink and reshape retail shops in an unprecedented way – a way that matches the aspirations, desires, and lives of new generations

Friends using virtual glasses


To conduct this research project, we partnered with the Sustainable Design School, which uses ‘design thinking’, a methodology used to solve complex problems and find desirable solutions. A design mind-set is not problem-focused. Rather, it’s solution focused and action oriented towards creating a preferred future. Design thinking draws upon logic, imagination, intuition, and systematic reasoning to explore possibilities of what could be—and to create desired outcomes that benefit customers. The innovative results of our joint project were definitely an eye-opener in this respect.

Travel retailers now need to rethink their future business to adapt to new realities and newer generations. We believe this paper will appeal to both online and offline travel retailers alike by giving insights into the right technological approach to engage with their travellers by offering products that match their desires.

We invite you to download a copy of The Travel Retailer of the Future here.

Related reading: Online Travel 2020.


Travel Platform, Research