The current gloomy economic environment is evidently affecting consumers’ interest in certain types of lodging accommodations, as revealed in the just-released Ypartnership/Yankelovich 2009 National Travel MONITOR. All of the information seems to point favorably to vacaton rental homes as a lodging alternative, and specifically places like the Outer Banks!
The Ypartnership/Yankelovich, Inc. National Leisure Travel MONITOR is noted on the ypartnership web site as the authoratative, consumer research report providing insights on the attitudes, preferences and intentions of adult active leisure travelers.
The 2009 National Leisure Travel MONITOR is based on a nationally projectable survey of 1590 active U.S. leisure travelers and provides valuable insights into the minds of leisure travelers on such things as trip characteristics, accommodations preferences, emerging issues such as green travel, demography, and traditional habits.
Peter Yeswich, Chairman & CEO of Ypartnership is a frequent visitor to the Outer Banks and has spoken numerous times to area travel industry executives on travel trends. As a spokesperson for the Travel MONITOR Yesawich had some interesting comments for those that call the Outer Banks their ideal vacation destination. Namely the things that Outer Banks Visitors cherish are now nationwide trends.
Compared to last year, preference for independently operated hotels and resorts is up, while preference for chain-affiliated properties is declining. Leisure travelers are also more likely to cite “value for the price” as a key consideration when selecting lodging accommodations. Although preference for independent lodging is growing (now cited by 20 percent of all leisure travelers), it is still important to note that eight out of 10 leisure travelers prefer chain-affiliated accommodations (however this preference has declined significantly over last year where there were a record number of travelers preferring chain-affiliated accommodations)
“The growth in preference for independent hotels and resorts appears to be driven by two factors,” said Peter C. Yesawich, chairman and CEO of Ypartnership. “First, a growing number of consumers appear more interested in the novelty and/or special character many independent operators have scripted into their properties. Second, the quest for better value, now defined in terms of a more attractive price, appears to be motivating many leisure travelers to evaluate independent alternatives.”
The top three factors leisure travelers consider when selecting lodging accommodations are “value for the price,” the “location of the property,” and the “room rate.” While location and room rate were cited by essentially the same percentage of respondents in both 2008 to 2009, “value for the price” increased significantly from 82 percent to 88 percent. Another apparent contributor to the perception of good value, a complimentary breakfast included with the room rate, jumped from 51 percent to 58 percent. And it is interesting to note that the influence of a recognizable brand name decreased significantly from 51 percent to 44 percent.
We here at Everything Outer Banks glean from this year’s report that vacation rentals, and particularly Outer Banks Vacation rentals seem to be a perfect match for the savvy consumer.