Recently I found an article that combined a number of interesting statistics relating to online reservations and sales through the Internet for the travel industry. These are really worth looking at:
- In 2007, nearly 40 million U.S. households will book travel online, spending $86 billion Web travelers now make up 79% of the U.S. travel population and 55% of them buy leisure travel online.
- High-income travelers, households with annual incomes of $100,000 or more a year, account for just 16% of the U.S. online leisure travel population – a market that represents 10.9 million households and spends $60 billion on leisure travel.
- In November 2005, reports that 79 million American adults are now using the Internet to plan their trips. Also growing rapidly is a propensity to book online, with nearly 65 million U.S. adults now booking this way.
- Online sales of leisure and unmanaged travel in the U.S. are estimated to be $122 billion in 2009 – up from $65 billion in 2005.
- Half of U.S. interactive marketers questioned by Forrester Research in April 2006 said that they either used or planned to use blogs.
- The average rate for room nights booked through travel agents was 33.3 percent higher than the average rate for room nights booked via the Internet.
- In 2007, nearly one-third of all reservations in hospitality in North America will be generated from the Internet (29% in 2005).
- By 2010, more than 45% of all travel reservations in the U.S. will be done via the Internet (Merrill Lynch, HeBS).
- By 2010, the Internet will contribute over 45% of all travel-related bookings in North America.
- The ratio between the direct and indirect online channel continues to improve in favor of the direct channel: from 52:48 in 2002 to 56:44 in 2006; it is projected to be 62:38 by 2008. Some major brands already enjoy a very healthy 80:20 direct vs. indirect online channel ratios.
- It is much more expensive to book through a third party:
- Customers were more satisfied with the Internet travel service provider they last purchased from than they were with Internet travel services in general.
- According to a new report from PhoCusWright, Inc., next year, for the first time, transactions on the Internet will account for over half (54 percent) of all U.S. travel bookings.
There are defiantly trends that emerge from all of this information, but it is safe to say that online sales for the travel industry are becoming the norm. There are many vendors and resellers that will help distribute products for tourism companies, but the wise company will always give the customer the ability to accept bookings through their own website.
Accepting bookings on a companies home page will save company from paying high commissions and booking charges for each of the products that are sold. This passes on savings to the consumer and the company with the inventory, and eliminates the unnecessary middle man.
Check out www.Rezgo.com if you are interested in a powerful booking solution for your tour inventory. We created Rezgo with the latest trends in mind.