With its recent brand refresh, Contiki is introducing its customers to ‘Social Travel’ – a travel style Canadians have probably never heard of, but millions have enjoyed.
Social Travel is bringing a group of like-minded people together on a trip, designed around the phenomenon that experiences are heightened when shared with others. And there is a huge global desire for it.
Contiki research shows that 97% of Australians have a positive feeling toward Social Travel with the UK and Europe (96%), New Zealand (91%) USA (87%) and Canada (83%). Contiki speculates these numbers are so high as we have been denied basic human social connections throughout the pandemic.
And while geographically it is close, it seems those on the mature side of the youth market have more of the feels for Social Travel. Among 18-24-year-olds, 88% had a positive feeling toward social travel, which increased to 93% in the 25-35’s.
Study participants suggested we associate Social Travel mostly with new experiences (72%), making friends (64%) and good memories (59%). Contiki sort all the trip details and itineraries to maximize on trip experience, but this is only a small piece of the overall puzzle.
Contiki’s Chief Marketing Officer, Simon Llanos observes: “Interestingly, only half of participants stated ‘sharing experiences’ as one of the appeals of Social Travel, but this dramatically increases to almost 98% once the trip has concluded. The biggest shift in any of the original appeals.”
Llanos contined: “While we might not initially realize its appeal, our unconscious does and craves this kind of connection, our sensory experience is changed depending on whether it is shared or not. The shared is more intense than unshared, leaving it as the number one appeal on exit surveys. Our job is to help our clients understand this before they depart – it’s going to be great.”
But Contiki Social Travel is not exclusively for those who can compile a squad and already have the ‘social’ element sorted.
Natasha Lawrence, Contiki’s Commercial and Product development director, reports that: “We’re seeing a steady increase in solo travellers that really ramped up between 2018-19 and continues to grow close to 10% year on year. It is now our most dominant traveller type.”
And Lawrence continues: “Contiki knew from previous surveys on solo travel that 72% of respondents would travel solo, but nervousness or loneliness of solo travel was the biggest prohibitor at almost 50%.”
Sheralyn Berry, Contiki Canada President, points out that: “It stands to reason a Contiki Social Travel trip filled with travellers on the same wavelength enhancing each other’s experience would be an ideal fit for a Canadian client looking to travel solo.”
And Berry adds: “Travellers meet people from all over the world, both travelling solo and in small groups, but all aligned on having the best time ever.”
Lawrence concludes: “It’s ensuring for clients to know they can get this great travel experience even if their friends are pro ghosters when it comes to actually sorting the details.”
As for the secret sauce, well, Contiki won’t share it all, but they do give some bits away. Social travel trips provided by Contiki are designed to quickly create a strong group dynamic where strangers are not strange for very long.
Travellers quickly become integrated with one another so there is little competition for attention or thought.
The details of the trips are all sorted, and itineraries carefully designed to ensure clients can stay in this heightened enjoyment state rather than having to worry about the trivial stresses that can arise when travelling in a conventional way. Contiki states that realizing this is when the real fun begins.
Trips are available from three to 45 days and can visit multiple countries or take a more in-depth approach spending time in one location or region.
From general trips to sailing, skiing, hiking and so much more there really is a great shared experience for every taste. All carbon neutral thanks to Contiki Cares.
For more, go to https://www.contiki.com/ca/en/about/social-travel .