Despite the digital revolution allowing holidaymakers constant access to online advice and booking information, consumers are choosing a multi-channel approach to inspire and inform their holiday choices, according to new research by ABTA.
The findings revealed that rather than replacing face-to-face and print sources, internet search engines and websites sit alongside more traditional offline sources.
Consumers were asked what sources they used to both inspire them in their holiday choices, and also for practical information. General internet search engines top the list of sources with 41% of people using them to look for holiday ideas and inspiration and 43% using them for practical information. This is followed by holiday/destination brochures with 36% using them for ideas and inspiration and 35% for practical information.
Recommendations from friends, family and colleagues and travel review websites are also popular sources of inspiration and practical information.
Travel professionals, used by one in five (20%) people, are the fifth most used source of practical information and newspaper or magazine articles make up the top five sources of ideas and inspiration with one in five (22%) using them. Some 15% of people used travel company websites for ideas and inspiration and 18% used these sites for practical information.
Victoria Bacon, ABTA head of communications said: “A holiday is a very significant purchase for most consumers and it is clear the people are keen to use a wide variety of sources both to inspire and inform their decision-making.
"Travel professionals are a popular source of information, particularly among younger consumers, but it is perhaps surprising to see that travel company websites don’t make it into the top five sources either for ideas or information. This suggests there is an enormous opportunity for travel companies to play a pivotal role in the consumer booking journey by continuing to improve their website offering and by tapping into other popular sources of information and inspiration.”