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Activities and experiences tie all generations together, but preferences disrupt broad-based offerings for a global market worth $183 billion up 35% over last 5 years

Travellers from across the globe representing all generations, now have a common interest in activities and experiences that are now influencing, indeed in many cases driving their travel decisions, according to new research from Expedia Group Media Solutions.

The research underscores the notion that cultural and once-in-a-lifetime experiences, exploring new destinations and interactive activities, are ranked by all generations significantly higher than value or a discounted price.

Arabian Travel Market 2020, which takes place at Dubai World Trade Centre from 19-22 April 2020, will bring together travel and tourism experts from across the globe to discuss the burgeoning global tours and activities market, which according to New York-based Skift Research, is estimated to be worth $183 billion this year, a 35% increase since 2016.

“Although all generations are now looking for activities and experiences, above all else, what makes this market more complex, is the individual preferences and demands of each generation and of course ultimately, the challenge facing marketers trying to engage with them,” said Danielle Curtis, Exhibition Director ME, Arabian Travel Market 2020.

ATM is holding a series of seminars on its Global Stage identifying the latest in hospitality concepts as well as the most recent trends in cultural tourism to future developments in the wellness economy and responsible tourism. And addressing these issues ATM has recruited industry experts from Kerten Hospitality, Accor, as well as representatives from Abu Dhabi and Ajman tourism boards.

Boomers, born between 1946 and 1964 are the least concerned about budget and are especially interested in sightseeing and in the case of American tourists, 40% will plan their holiday around food and drink. They want safety, security and service and the so-called Platinum Pensioners are a much sought-after demographic – they want to relax and generally avoid long haul trips.

Gen X travelers who are now typically aged between 40 and 56 years, travel least out of the generations, due to corporate careers, 50% of all leadership roles worldwide are occupied by Gen Xers. As such they value work-life balance and prefer relaxing holidays to de-stress. Interestingly, 25% of Gen X will accept word of mouth during their decision-making process and are especially drawn towards cultural experiences Expedia research found that 70% enjoy museums, historical sites and art galleries.

Generation Y or Millennials, who are today aged between 25 and 39, are the most talked about generation and are the undisputed champions of the frequent traveler title, technically adept and the great disrupters. More than anything, Millennials crave adventure and experiential variety and although they are careful with their budget, in gross terms it the largest submarket by revenue, generated through sheer volume.

Ipsos research in September 2018, concluded that 25% of the MENA region’s population is made up of Millennials; 97% are online; 94% are present on at least one social platform; 78% share content weekly; 74% have interacted online with an brand and 64% are always looking for best offers and deals available. This may have something to do with the fact that 41% of MENA’s Millennials feel overwhelmed by financial burden, and only 70% of those of working age, are actually employed.

“One emerging trend travel and tourism experts will be watching is Generation Alpha – the children of the Millennials. According to Skift these kids, born after 2010, will start making their own travel arrangements well before the end of this decade and there is a belief that they are expected to be even more disruptive than their parents,” added Curtis.

Finally, Generation Z, those born between 1996 and 2010, aged between 10 and 24 years, spend 11% of their travel budget on activities and tours the highest of any generation according to Expedia research. What sets this open-minded, interactive generation apart from the others, is that 90% are inspired by peers on social networks and 70% are open to creative ideas. As true digital natives, they are comfortable researching, planning and booking their travel from their mobile phone and yearn for new, unique and authentic experiences.

“So, in response, apart from the challenges of marketing to these disjointed generations, the ATM seminars will also be examining how hotels, destinations, attractions, tours and other activities are created, packaged and priced, to meet demand. We will also be launching the Middle East’s first ever edition of Arival Dubai @ ATM showcasing the next generation of in-destination trends and innovation, as well as exploring the various opportunities that sector presents,” said Curtis.

ATM, considered by industry professionals as a barometer for the Middle East and North Africa tourism sector, welcomed almost 40,000 people to its 2019 event with representation from 150 countries. With over 100 exhibitors making their debut, ATM 2019 showcased the largest ever exhibition from Asia.

For more news about ATM, please visit: https://arabiantravelmarket.wtm.com/media-centre/Press-Releases/

-ENDS-

About Arabian Travel Market (ATM)

Arabian Travel Market (ATM) is the leading, international travel and tourism event in the Middle East – introducing both inbound and outbound tourism professionals to over 2,500 of the most breath-taking destinations, attractions and brands as well as the very latest cutting-edge technologies. Attracting almost 40,000 industry professionals, with representation from 150 countries, ATM prides itself on being the hub of all travel and tourism ideas – providing a platform to discuss insights on the ever-changing industry, share innovations and unlock endless business opportunities over the four days.  ATM 2020’s show theme is Events for Tourism Growth, also new to the show will be Travel Forward, a high-end travel and hospitality innovation event, dedicated conference summits and ATM buyer forums for key source markets India, Saudi Arabia and Russia as well as the inaugural Arival Dubai @ ATM – a dedicated in-destination forum. www.arabiantravelmarket.wtm.com.

Next event: Sunday 19 to Wednesday 22 April 2020 – Dubai #IdeasArriveHere

About Arabian Travel Week

Arabian Travel Week is a festival of events taking place within and alongside Arabian Travel Market 2020. The week will include ILTM Arabia, the inaugural Travel Forward, a new travel tech and hospitality innovation event launching this year, and Arival Dubai @ ATM, a dedicated in-destination forum. Additionally, it will host ATM Buyer Forums for key source markets India, Saudi Arabia and Russia and ATM Speed Networking events. Providing a renewed focus for the Middle East’s travel and tourism sector – under one roof over the course of one week.www.arabiantravelweek.com

Next event: Thursday 16 to Thursday 23 April 2020 – Dubai

About Reed Exhibitions

Reed Exhibitions is the world’s leading events business, enhancing the power of face-to-face through data and digital tools at more than 500 events a year, in more than 43 countries, attracting more than seven million participants. Reed’s events are held in the Americas, Europe, Asia Pacific and Africa and organised by 41 fully staffed offices. Reed Exhibitions serves 43 industry sectors with trade and consumer events. It is part of RELX Group plc, a world-leading provider of information solutions for professional customers across industries.

About Reed Travel Exhibitions

Reed Travel Exhibitions is the world’s leading travel and tourism event’s organiser with a growing portfolio of more than 22 international travel and tourism trade events in Europe, the Americas, Asia, the Middle East and Africa. Our events are market leaders in their sectors, whether it is global and regional leisure travel trade events, or specialist events for meetings, incentives, conference, events (MICE) industry, business travel, LGBTQ+ travel, luxury travel, travel technology as well as golf and spa travel. We have over 40 years’ experience in organising world-leading travel exhibitions.

About World Travel Market

World Travel Market (WTM) portfolio comprises four leading B2B events across four continents, generating more than $7 billion of industry deals. In addition to ATM, the events are:

WTM London, the leading global event for the travel industry, is the must-attend three-day exhibition for the worldwide travel and tourism industry. Around 50,000 senior travel industry professionals, government ministers and international media visit ExCeL London every November, generating over £3.71 billion in travel industry contracts. http://london.wtm.com/

Next event: Monday 2 to Wednesday 4 November 2020 – London #IdeasArriveHere

WTM Latin America attracts about 9,000 senior executives and generates about US$374 million of new business deals. Taking place in Sao Paulo, Brazil, this show attracts a global audience to meet and shape the direction of the travel industry. More than 8,000 unique visitors, including buyers and travel agents, attend the event to network, negotiate and discover the latest industry news. http://latinamerica.wtm.com/.

Next event: Tuesday 31 March to Thursday 2 April 2020 – Sao Paulo

WTM Africa launched in 2014 in Cape Town, South Africa. Around 5,000 travel industry professionals attend Africa’s leading inbound and outbound travel and tourism market. WTM Africa delivers a proven mix of hosted buyers, media, pre-scheduled appointments, on-site networking, evening functions and invited travel trade visitors. http://africa.wtm.com/.

Next event: Monday 6 to Wednesday 8 April 2020 – Cape Town

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