It’s hard to find an article to contest the idea that millennials are surpassing the baby boomer generation in spending on travel, hotels and destination getaways.
In general, they are a group of young people who are keen on going on life-changing holidays in interesting places that not only give them excellent experiences, but also make other people that little bit jealous.
Of course, it isn’t just the destination that’s important to millennials, as they’re also keen to stay in places that are just as cool as the city, country or town that they’re visiting. Hotels and other holiday accommodations are having to work very hard at making sure that they adhere to the needs and wants of this generation, as they are the majority of people who are going on holidays.
It’s important to remember that millennials are mostly focused on increasing their knowledge and experiencing the everyday life of the place that they go to. These are the people who will ingratiate themselves by searching for exotic regional food and spending time with the friendly locals in the area.
As Forbes points out, having a truly amazing holiday will often come at the expense of relaxing on holiday – this is often a by-product of a holiday for the millennial.
More than any other group of people, millennials are highly digital people in their everyday life and this spills over into their travel experiences too.
The surest way to make sure that you impress a millennial guest is to make sure that you have a variety of ways for them to use their phones, different apps or even technology in the hotel itself.
For example, many hotels are now facilitating wireless check-ins for their guests, which they can do over a web browser or by downloading the hotel’s app to their smartphone.
This is great not only for the customer – who will really appreciate the modern methods of your business – but also for your hotel, as you will be making sure that you have fewer queues at the reception area. This is particularly helpful for busy times of the week, such as Friday check-in and Sunday morning check-outs – a notoriously chaotic time in the hotel trade.
Wireless internet should come as standard in all hotels; for example, the M by Montcalm Shoreditch London Tech City hotel has free Wi-Fi in all areas of the building, including the bedrooms.
This is because millennials are constantly attached to their mobile gadgets, particularly their phones, but be aware that they’ll probably also have iPads and potentially computers in tow. Often, this generation will combine a work trip with leisure by extending it into a proper vacation, which is another reason why they may have a lot more stuff than your standard baby boomer.
Regarding payments, we’ve all noticed the serious hike in the amount of places that now accept contactless payments. It’s in your best interests to introduce these wireless payments into your hotel too, as people are starting to assume that this is the standard method for payment.
Touch ID is also becoming a popular form of travel payment, so this is another thing that you should consider. Many hotels are now beginning to introduce wireless room key apps, so guests don’t have to carry around a separate card with them and can instead simply hold their phone up to the door to open it.
Due to their interest in staying connected, millennials are keen users of social media websites.
Facebook and Twitter are quickly becoming the easiest way for millennial travellers to write reviews on everything from food to hotels and the people who work in them.
You have to remember that this group of people are fond of logging everything that they do and sharing it with their friends on social media. It’s a double-edged sword because if they have a bad experience they’re going to complain, and it’s a bad recommendation for your hotel. However, if you give them an excellent guest experience, they’re also going to shout about it on Facebook and Twitter, which is great free advertising and word of mouth for you.
Encourage people to leave you reviews, to check in on your Facebook page, and to send feedback to your Twitter account by sharing their experiences. It’s a really good way to engage your guests and shows that you have an interest in hearing what they have to say.
A lot of hotels are now taking this even further by posting offers on their Facebook pages, such as a free overnight stay with bed and breakfast, to encourage people to share and like their information. As we mentioned, this is a cheap and easy way to meet the needs of your millennial traveller and gather some great marketing research at the same time.