VIENNA, March 14, 2014 /PRNewswire/ --
The youth travel sector generated US$203 billion in revenue last year - twice as much as the global video game industry. That's why it's so important that travel organisations start planning now in order to benefit from this booming market, StudentMarketing CEO Samuel Vetrak told delegates at ITB Berlin last week.
Vetrak was one of eight leading destination experts who took part in what is now an annual seminar on the latest trends in youth travel at ITB Berlin, the world's largest tourism convention, on March 6. Vetrak emphasized how important it is for destinations to have a strategic plan in place in order to engage young travellers.
Other highlights from his presentation included:
- In 2013, youth travel accounted for 207 million arrivals. By 2015, it's expected that young travellers will surpass business travellers in the number of international arrivals and revenues generated overall.
- The value of youth travel is long-term. As the travellers grow older, they return to the destinations they experienced in their youth.
- Because 42% of young people travel for a specific purpose, special events are one of the best ways to attract this demographic.
- Destinations must connect with other organisations that facilitate young people travelling overseas. This includes participating in trade missions, press tours and other opportunities.
Other travel experts that took part in the youth travel discussion at ITB Berlin included Yolanda Perdomo of the United Nations World Tourism Organization, David Chapman of WYSE Travel Confederation, Carylann Assante, of the Student and Youth Travel Association, Greg Klassen of Canadian Tourism Commission, Nick Greenfield, of European Tour Operators Association, Callum Kennedy of British Eduactional Travel Association, and Frank Uffen of The Student Hotel Amsterdam.
During the panel discussion, all eight travel experts agreed that:
- Connecting tourism, educational institutions, suppliers and the investment community must be a priority for any destination implementing a youth travel strategy.
- Destinations must always focus on the quality of the youth travel experience.
- Youth travel needs be seen in a larger context that goes beyond tourism. This is because the social value of youth travel is just as important as the revenue generated by this industry.
- Youth travel is still inaccurately viewed by some travel professionals as being "cheap" or not worth investing in. Now is the time to change this stereotype.
- In-depth market research and data are key to proving that the youth travel sector has significant value and deserves more recognition.
For a full recording of the session, please visit:
For a full version of the press release, please visit:
StudentMarketing is an international research & business development consultancy that specializes in the global youth, student and educational travel market. The company, a UNWTO Affiliate Member, systematically maps the industry and monitors trends and opportunities as well as provides a wide portfolio of solutions for business development. Visit http://www.student-market.com for more information.
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SOURCE StudentMarketing, Ltd.