Amadeus Report – online travellers in North America
The report argues that online will become the dominant channel for purchasing travel in 2020 and is one of a series of reports produced by Amadeus in partnership with research agency Opinium. Just over 2,000 North American adults (with an equal split between the USA and Canada) who had used an OTA to book a holiday in the past year were quizzed in September 2019.
The stand-out aspiration for North Americans when choosing to book through an OTA was an agency that clearly offered value for money. Some way behind, although still mentioned by around one-third as being important criteria for choosing an OTA were the opportunity to see traveller reviews and the convenience of having access to all the services they required in a single place.
Ahead of the booking stage two-thirds reported seeking inspiration from blogs, vloggers or influencers but as is frequently the case the research found the most powerful influence on destination choice to be recommendations from friends and family.
After deciding on a destination active planning typically starts between four to six months ahead of departure with an average of three to four websites visited during this phase.
One of the commonly cited reasons for abandoning a booking with an OTA was the discovery of hidden charges and fees, something that had led to one-third emptying their basket.
Nearly nine-in-ten of respondents said that being offered personalisation was important to them, for example the option to choose seats or pre-select meals when booking flights.
Less than half of those taking part said that they were concerned about the environmental impact of their travel.