Grow Your Travel Business by Booking Trips for Millennials

13 Oct Grow Your Travel Business by Booking Trips for Millennials

Because Millennials are younger than Baby Boomers, you think they’d be more likely to do all their business, including booking travel, online – and that they’d see something like phoning a travel agent to go on vacation as too old school.

But in fact, the opposite is true: According to the American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA), Millennials are more likely to use an agent than travelers in any other age group.

“Millennials are leading the way in travel agent usage,” said ASTA president Zane Kerby. In fact, 30% of Millennials surveyed by ASTA have used a travel agent in the last 12 months — and 45% said they’re likely to recommend a travel agent to a friend or family member. [1] An article in Travel Weekly reports that 92% of Millennials said using agents enhances the travel experience. [2]

So if you are not targeting Millennials as potential clients for your travel business, you may be leaving money on the table. And there are 4 important things you should know about Millennials and travel.


First: Like everyone else does for almost everything today, Millennials do a lot of research online up front. So by the time they call you, the travel agent, may have a pretty good idea of where they want to go, what they want to do, and even how much it should cost.

You need to keep your knowledge and research resources current, so you avoid the embarrassment of having clients who know more than you do – which can cause them to lose confidence in you.

This is where getting out of the office and going on “familiarization trips,” also known as “fam trips,” is vital.

To familiarize travel agents with their venues in the hopes of having more business sent their way, many hotels, resorts, and cruise lines will invite travel agents for free or discounted vacations, known in the industry as fam trips.

The more fam trips you go on, the more venues you experience first-hand, enabling you to give a more accurate and in-depth travel recommendation … and plan a better trip … than an agent who has never been there – adding value that Millennials in particular seem to appreciate.


Second: Although on the surface using the Internet to plan and book travel seems quickest, in fact it takes a lot of time. Millennials increasingly book travel through agents precisely because, by having someone else do the work, the busy customer saves precious time.

Travel industry expert, Meagan Drillinger, notes that Millennial travelers fall into one of two categories. Some are pressed for time and overwhelmed by all the travel choices online. They want an agent to do all the work of planning and booking the trip. [3]

Other young travelers, says Drillinger, “want to be collaborative.” If you are speaking with them remotely, Skype and screen share so they can see what you’re showing them on their computer desktop.


Third: Travel Weekly reports that Millennials are using agents to provide them with “curated, personalized travel.” This means they primarily turn to travel agents when booking complex, multi-part trips with multiple venues and activities.


Fourth: Another thing agents bring to the table is ideas. Millennials typically have traveled less extensively than Baby Boomers. So they aren’t sure where they should go first, and look to you as the agent for suggestions.


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[2] Agent-Issues/Millennials-like-tailored-vacations-so-can-agents-benefit

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