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Travel industry news

13 Nov 2017

BY Rob Gill


Sustainability now more important for luxury travellers

Sustainability is becoming a bigger issue for luxury travellers of all ages with the majority saying they consider it to be important when choosing a resort to book.


The Stop, Think, Discuss survey found 66% of respondents said sustainability is an important factor in choosing a resort, which was even higher for European consumers, at 90%.


Carried out by carried out by sustainability consultancy Bouteco, the survey found almost half (47%) of holidaymakers would be interested in actively getting involved with community work while on holiday – although only 25% have actually done this kind of work so far.


Consumers were clear that they did not want to scrimp on their comforts - 42% said they would be willing to pay more to stay in a sustainable hotel but only if they did not have to compromise on luxury or comfort.


Sustainability is also an issue for all generations with Bouteco finding that older wealthy travellers were more interested in environmental issues, with younger consumers having more of a focus on social and community issues.


Holly Tuppen, a sustainability expert, journalist and co-founder of Bouteco, said: “Through Bouteco’s survey we were delighted to discover that ethical consumption is not the reserve of millennials; when it comes to travel, all age groups are turning towards more responsible and authentic experiences.


“While industry bodies wrangle with the economic and political implications of global sustainable policy, it’s more important than ever for all the players in the travel industry to be motivated and empowered to do their bit.


“Many hotels, organisations and individuals are working relentlessly to make travel a force for good, but there is still much to be done.


“We hope that our report persuades the luxury hospitality sector that there’s never been a more prudent time to implement and promote sustainable and social initiatives.”


Having sustainability certification is more important for Europeans, with 40% considering them to be “very important”. Younger consumers – those aged under 24 - can also be swayed by a resort having official certification with 65% saying it is “important” or “very important”.


Juliet Kinsman, Bouteco co-founder, writer and boutique hotel expert, added: “We hope our survey’s findings will spur all to proudly shout about sustainability stories and distinguish the stylish hotels with soul and substance.


“A sense of purpose and belonging - of spiritual reward, not just material wealth - are motivating customers more and more. With so many manipulative algorithms at play, we still believe in word of mouth as the biggest influence.


“The hotel landscape is not meritocratic - all hotels are not created equal - Bouteco wants to get the good guys noticed with our genuine, algorithm-free recommendations.”

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