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Deloitte: Survey Uncovers the Erosion of Travel Loyalty

Deloitte recently released “A Restoration in Loyalty,” an inaugural survey that provides insights into consumer travel behavior and loyalty program satisfaction. It reported a steep decline in consumer loyalty to travel brands. Only eight percent of survey respondents indicated they always stay at the same brand of hotel brand, while just 14 percent of survey respondents always fly on the same airline.

Considering that most travel brands consider reward programs as the cornerstone of consumer loyalty, such programs ranked low in importance for influencing consumer travel (20th out of 26 attributes for hotels, and 19th out of 26 attributes for airlines) – well behind value and past experience. Only 55 percent consider loyalty programs of high importance when choosing airlines and 45 percent consider loyalty programs of high importance when choosing hotels.

According to the survey, 63 percent of respondents never want to interact with a travel brand via social media and 44 percent never visit social media and review sites for travel. Additionally, 80 percent of respondents have never downloaded a hotel or airline app to their smartphones. Meanwhile, nearly half of survey respondents (49 percent) have used flash sale sites, to follow discounts on travel.

The web-based survey was commissioned by Deloitte and conducted by an independent research company between Oct. 18 and Oct. 23, 2012. The survey polled 4,000 hotel and airline customers, based on hotel stay and/or airline travel during the past 12 months.

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