For the past several years, hospitality industry officials have said that travelers are booking closer to their dates than ever before. Now here comes proof. A Blue Paper published by Hilton Hotels & Resorts indicates 42 percent of upscale travelers in the United States will book within three months of departure. Titled Blue Paper: Resort Trends Summer 2011, the study provides an outlook of 2011 summer resort travel and global trends related to the leisure segment. Hilton Hotels & Resorts uses proprietary qualitative and quantitative global research, third-party data and its own global expertise to offer a view of the resort segment of the hotel industry, citing valuable global traveler preferences and current guest booking patterns.
In addition to confirming the trend of shorter booking cycles, even at resorts, Hilton says the study outlines “emerging global trends” in the resort space and consumer expectations. The research conducted throughout the past year includes findings from 2,500 online interviews in four countries (United States, United Kingdom, Germany and Russia), specifically targeting travelers who have stayed at a resort for leisure in the past two years. Hilton Hotels & Resorts also conducted resort-specific focus groups in five cities (Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, London and Berlin) to gain deeper insights into the resort market. Most recently the flagship brand of Hilton Worldwide completed a supplementary survey, specifically related to summer 2011 resort travel among U.S. adults who regularly stay in full-service and luxury hotels and resorts.
“Leisure travel remains a key area of focus for us on a global scale. In listening to our guests and travelers around the world, we identified clear expectations among customers in multiple global markets that are defining what the contemporary resort experience should be. This information will be helpful to travel agents, industry professionals and our partners as we begin the 2011 summer season,” said Andrew Flack, vice president, global brand marketing, Hilton Hotels & Resorts.
Hilton Resorts, a specific collection of premier properties within the Hilton Hotels & Resorts portfolio, includes more than 70 resorts located throughout 26 countries. Earlier this month Hilton launched www.hilton.com/resorts, a new portal for travelers seeking resort experiences. The site includes special tools to allow guests to search for a resort by activity desired, or by geographic location, creating an enhanced user experience.