By 2020, Millennial travelers will make up more than 50 percent of all hotel guests worldwide, according to eHotelier’s Insights. Interestingly, MMGY Global reports that although the average spend on vacations remains the same, Millennials are spending 15 percent — or $478 — more this year than in 2017. Moreover, they spend $277 more per household than the average traveler. Put all of this together, and it’s clear that Millennials will play a significant role in shaping the future of the hospitality industry. Here’s are some of the ways they’re having an impact:
- They’re shaping hotel design. As Hotelier Magazine points out, Millennials share several characteristics that are influencing hotel design, including a preference for contemporary dwelling spaces, a demand for smart technologies and the desire to have access to information at all times. For this reason, hotel design now focuses on creating modern spaces that are equipped with smart technology and provide 24/7 connectivity.
- They place more value on meaningful, personalized experiences. Millennials are looking for meaningful experiences — including when they’re traveling. HospitalityNet™ advises that the guest experience is now about more than just lodging; it’s also about providing the desired environment, as well as things like personalized experience packages. Because of this, forward-thinking hotels are gathering guest data and analyzing it in order to offer guests individualized and memorable experiences designed to turn them into loyal customers.
- They expect brands to support sustainable operations. In general, Millennials are committed to green solutions and sustainability in both their personal and their professional lives — and that applies when they travel, too. As a result, many hotels are making a commitment to sustainable operations, whether that means using local suppliers for the hotel restaurant, implementing energy-efficient building systems or something else.
- They’re focusing increasingly on food. According to Hotel Business, due to the influence of the foodie culture, cuisine is an important consideration for many travelers. This is causing many hotels to change their approach to food and beverage in order to offer their guests the high-quality food they desire.
- They’re shifting away from home sharing. The fourth annual Allianz Travel Insurance Sharing Economy Index, released in June 2018, showed a surprising trend: For the first time, Millennials’ intention to use sharing economy services in their travels declined. In fact, 33 percent of Millennial survey respondents agreed that conventional travel services offered the best overall experience. This could indicate a shift away from home sharing services like Airbnb in favor of traditional hotels.