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Now is the time

However, the travel industry should be making hay while it can, as Neufeld warned that the characteristics of this sector would change over time. “At some point, the ‘squeezed middle’ will become the over-50s; they have larger mortgage debt and larger university education debt,” he said.


Research by Abta has revealed the holiday preferences of the over-50s “Baby Boomer” generation – those born in the 20 or so years after the Second World War. Among the findings are that the 55-64 age group were the most likely to plan a city break in the next 12 months and that one in six would like a trip to lakes and mountains in the coming year.


The research showed that 55-64 year-olds take more holidays than any other age group, with 48% travelling in the UK or abroad last year. Surprisingly, 87% of those aged 45-64 booked online – a higher percentage of online bookings than made by any other age group.


Kevin Lavery, vice-chairman of the Mature Marketing Association, said the travel industry had a lot to learn about how it approached the sector.


“The advertising and marketing industry is youth centric and so often targets upwardly mobile millennials who can’t afford premium products,” he said.


“It’s important to recognise the spending power of the over-50s. However, only 10% of advertising spend is aimed at the older market.”

 

  • TTG is media partner to Abta’s The Over 50s Market in Travel event, taking place on November 30 in London. Among other speakers are Graeme McKenzie from Let’s Talk Ageing and G Adventures’ John Warner. Sessions will cover topics including marketing to the over-50s, how to tailor product, adventure travel and legal issues.

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TTG - Travel Trade Gazette
For Smarter, Better, Fairer Travel
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