ASTA Releases New ‘How America Travels’ Survey

Travel Agent on Phone

PHOTO: Travel Agent on the phone. (photo courtesy of jacoblund/iStock/Getty Images Plus)

The American Society of Travel Advisors (ASTA) released a study Monday which tracks the perception of travelers from the United States, dubbed How America Travels.

The survey of 2,879 Millennials, Gen Xers and Boomers from the U.S. was funded by the Carnival Corporation & plc with the intent of providing ASTA members better ways to communicate their value proposition when marketing to potential new and existing clients.

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As for the findings, travel agents should be rejoicing, as 42 percent of respondents said expert and insider information on destinations was the main reason they contacted an advisor. Other reasons included providing a high level of service (39 percent), having someone to assist if travel disruptions occur (35 percent) and booking an unfamiliar destination (32 percent).

For travelers who don’t usually need assistance, they contacted an agent or advisor due to the need for help booking unfamiliar destination (42 percent), expert/insider information on destinations (40 percent), access to hotels, airlines and cruises (33 percent) and upgrades and/or amenities (33 percent).

“We approached this year’s study, funded by Carnival Corporation, with a greater focus on the changing landscape for travel and the factors shaping that change, with an eye toward helping advisors understand the impact of increased consumer choice on consumer behavior,” ASTA CEO Zane Kerby said. “This is part of our commitment to be an advocate for travel and travelers, as well as for our travel advisor members.”

The study also found some insightful data on advisor and agent users vs. non-users, including agent users being more than twice as likely to extend business trips with bleisure travel than non-users (62 percent vs. 27 percent) and advisor users are more satisfied with the frequency of vacations than non-users (68 percent vs. 45 percent).

Respondents also revealed that destination (82 percent), price (61 percent) and availability of travel companions (23 percent) are the top three factors which come into play when travelers are considering a vacation.

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