Article | by Becki Hemming
Multigenerational travelling means big bucks for businesses.
This article is part of The Great British Staycation
In 2019 before COVID hit, major travel companies were all reporting the same trend. Multi-generational holidays were on the rise. EasyJet’s passenger surveys had suggested 73% had taken a multi-generational holiday. At the same time, Ryanair reported intern-generational bookings had risen by 52% in the five years running up to 2019 and Tui’s holiday survey showed 79% of young adults were choosing to holiday with their parents. First Choice published that ‘saving money (23%), being able to afford multiple holidays in the year (18%), and being able to enjoy a more luxury getaway (24%) were cited as key reasons for young adults to holiday with their parents, alongside wanting to spend quality time together.
Fast forward two lockdowns, missed social events, extended isolation from loved ones and new found joy within UK shorelines… multi-generational UK staycations are expected to boom. Since birthdays and milestones passed with muted celebrations over the last couple of years, families are looking to make up for lost time and maximise on memories with the whole gang together. UK property rental company, Unique Homestays, says larger houses suitable for a multigenerational celebration are especially popular. A third of its 2022 availability across houses that sleep more than eight has already been booked (compared with 12 per cent at the same point pre-pandemic).
For financially privileged families, the desire to reconnect after such a long period of separation is adding to the boom in holidays for big groups of extended family, often anchored around a special event. “People are making up for low-key lockdown birthdays and time apart by taking multigenerational, celebratory holidays in style,” says a spokesperson for Red Savannah, which reports high demand for villas sleeping between 14 and 28. “They just want to gather people together.” UK holiday providers can look to where people already create and curate memories for inspiration on how to offer experiences that feel extra special together.
High-profile leisure attractions like Alton Towers and Friendsfest supplement the physical experience with a digital one to augment their visitors’ day. These range from the utility of better wayfinding, ordering and queuing solutions, to experience enhancements, like audio content as you explore, printed photos, or a personalised video montage. The free Alton Towers app also features a 'find my car' tool to help visitors at the end of a tiring day.
When multiple generations gather you can be certain of needing to plan and needing to wait. Providers should be asking...
Our ‘how might we’ questions turn the opportunity into addressable questions, to spark new ideas. We're sharing them to help you trigger thoughts for how your brand may implement solutions.
Tip: When answering these questions, don’t only think about your existing services, solutions, and revenue streams, but also consider how you might create new ones for this market.
Weddings are a classic example of multiple generations coming together to make memories that will last. Meticulous planning takes place and the memories live on in how the event is captured. This includes tangible ways like photography and video and sensory ways like the first songs and meals. Wedding service providers know this and charge more. It's why your wedding cake costs 3 to 4 times the amount of a cake for a different occasion.
Memories that can be accessed through digital, physical and sensory stimuli are a significant part of the overall value of investment into a special occasion. They also carry powerful emotions that can be important for holiday providers in driving repeat bookings. Holiday providers can be asking...
In 2015, easyJet created a hyper-personalised marketing campaign to celebrate its 20th anniversary. Customer data told personalised stories, ignited memories and shared inspiration of where to go next.
The campaign inspired emotive decision-making by telling a story, not just a list of facts. The travel recommendations were based on a profile of the destinations they had been to and distances travelled were linked to things like the length of the Nile and the distance to the moon. It leveraged emotion and engagement to result in transactions. Across all markets, 7.5 percent of easyJet customers who received the fully personalised version booked in the next 30 days.
It was made possible by the quality of historical customer data capture, but this isn’t always necessary for brands to deliver personalised experiences. Merkle’s 2021 Consumer Experience Sentiment Report found that only 23% of consumers oppose sharing personal information regardless of benefit — down 5% from 2020.
We’re increasingly willing to share information that will result in better personalised experiences. 86% of people say they’re more likely to do business with a company that interacts with them in a personalised way. Businesses in many sectors are already using this knowledge to collect more information in up-front digital interactions. Vitamin brand, vitl, asks new customers to share information spanning attitudes towards vitamins, lifestyle and what they’re looking to improve before offering personalised vitamin boxes.
This takes considerably more time to fill out than simply purchasing a vitamin selection online, but this time is worth spending for the personalised service customers will get in return.
When multiple-generations travel, they bring a wealth of knowledge about themselves and each other. This is data that can be collected in the booking process and activity throughout the stay to inform a personalised experience. Holiday providers can be asking...
Accessible furniture and mobility options for senior family members who need flexibility isn’t a given. When suitable alterations and additions are available, they can feel incredibly undesirable. Whilst elderly relatives relish the chance to spend time with the family, they want to feel like they’ve come on holiday, not like they’ve come to a care home. Claywood by Ayre Chamberlain Gaunt is a stunning home that was created to make life easier for a wheelchair-using mum so she doesn’t miss out or compromise on key family moments. Branded a wheelchair-friendly house in disguise, it has been built with many accessible features, like level thresholds, extra-wide corridors, lift access and specialist furniture. No compromise in beautiful design here.
Wheelchair-friendly house in disguise: Claywood by Ayre Chamberlain Gaunt
As some families take their grandparents on what may be one of their last holidays together, providers should be considering the desirability and suitability of their architecture, furniture and spaces. Providers can be asking...
In the coming months, some will be looking for trips that can ignite nostalgia for parents and grandparents, whilst creating new memories for young children. Young adults who no longer live with parents will be looking to upgrade quality time they’ve missed out on by holidaying together around special occasions. As holiday-goers increasingly look to travel in the UK with extended family members, the winners will be those who can bring flexibility across the physical and digital experience, deliver a heightened sense of occasion and facilitate memory capture across the generations.
Businesses that cater for multi-generational travel should ask themselves: