Tech-based millennials have mastered travel with use of new online apps, tools

Posted October 21, 2015


Let’s face it. The millennial generation has completely mastered the best ways to travel in 2015. With only the click of a button and they are fully booked—this futuristic generation has an incentive for exploring the world.

In fact, research shows they would rather spend on experiences. According to a study conducted by the United Nations, the millennials are responsible for $180 billion in annual tourism revenue.

Included are some of the main millennial travel trends, focused on convenience and accommodation, and guaranteed to fulfill your itinerary with personalized memories and experiences.

Where They Stay

There’s a collection of trendy hotel franchises that is attracting generation Y. These include the W, Virgin America, Moxy by Marriott and the Radisson Red (both created specifically for millennials).

“I find that a hotel can make or break how you view or feel about a country since you are outside of your comfort zone. We look for consistency,” said Morgan Thomas, avid world traveler (30 countries and counting) and a University of Miami student.

Her father, Raymond Thomas, president of City Tours U.S.A., countered this statement saying, “the youthful consumer doesn’t see all of the factors; they care about what is eye-catching and can commit with barely giving a second thought.” He added, “it is my and the travel companies’ challenge to reach the young consumer at each and every new channel.”

So what’s the key to their hearts and becoming their hotel selection?

Great cuisine, chic ambiance, hangout spots and most importantly, free Wi-Fi preferences. Hotels worldwide have caught the hint and made the upgrade so guests can get connected to the Internet at no extra cost.

On the contrary, it’s not shocking that young travelers are open to less conventional, yet more authentic housing options such as Airbnb and Home Away. Not to mention, Uber and Lyft in terms of transportation.

“I have also used Airbnb, for a villa in Mykonos, and it was one of my best travel experiences. Mainly because the property manager was at our beckoning call and it was a huge plus to know all the local spots,” adds Morgan Thomas, emphasizing the value of local familiarity.

Airbnb, a home sharing service that can be easily accessed through the Web or mobile app, is unquestionably changing not only the travel industry, but also the way we travel. The site links users to properties in cities worldwide by filtering the dates, locations and the number of guests, all of which are easily oriented by a map search tool that allows tagging their exact locations in the cities of their choice. Users are able to make reservations immediately, communicate directly with the property personnel and rank their stay through the mobile app as well.

From personal experience with Airbnb in the U.S. and Europe, the accommodations are generally more affordable, which allows for more spending on the location and its experiences. Airbnb’s success is accompanied by an array of different home sharing services such as Home Away (most comparable to Airbnb) and One Fine Stay (limited cities and more pricey).

Traveling Like Pro’s

It’s not that they are more seasoned, it’s that they have figured out how to make their travel process way easier. Young travelers want all the amenities and will definitely factor the cost of Wi-Fi and priority access into their budgets. Even en route, there is no time for disconnect.

“The impact of technology doesn’t change the basic concept of travel. What changes it, is the age of the new consumer and his purchase channels,” said Raymond Thomas.

When traveling the world, the millennials are always a step ahead with the ‘where and what.’ Mostly because their resources are endless. Simply posting a Facebook inquiry can spark real dialogue with personalized suggestions. Likewise, Instagram can easily create a travel portfolio filled with different spots to visit and try. Long gone are the days of relying on travel agencies and guides, social media is a means for influencers to share their personal memoirs spontaneously. See a ‘like-able’ photo? Take note of the geo-tag before your able to see for yourself.

In Our Hands

Literally. The cyberworld has created an overwhelming amount of ways for us to create and plan our trips instantly. Not just on the Web, but through the large list of mobile apps that have the power to save money and time.

“As a millennial, I rely on my United app to view plane schedules and any possible bump in my itinerary. It’s immediate,” said Morgan Thomas. She later added how ratings are key for travelers. “You definitely can learn from someone else’s mistakes. I have personally left reviews in hopes of helping any future traveler and so I trust “most” reviews. Trip Advisor is my favorite source to learn what to see, eat, and also where to enjoy nightlife.”

When asking Raymond his opinion on all the new travel transformations he replied, “It is difficult to keep up and nobody in the industry has a real answer as technology is evolving so quickly. Yesterdays answers don’t apply to tomorrows questions.”

His daughter, however, giggles this off, sharing that their families’ millennials keep him up to date on his travel trends just fine.

Apps By Category:

Translations: Google Translate
Maps: Google Maps, Waze
Transportation: Uber, Lyft
Social Media: Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, Wine n’ Dine

Travel Booking:

Hooper: A mobile app that calculates in advance the best and lowest time of the day to buy flights online.
Trip Advisor: A top resource where travelers are able to rate just about anything using the star system.
TripIt: Confirmation emails for flights, hotels, rental cars and all travel are organized into one easy itinerary automatically through this app.
Kayak: Easy to use mobile app that conglomerates all travel resources (flights, hotels) into one convenient manner.
Hotels Tonight: Exactly what it sounds like. A mobile app filled with last-minute deals on hotels geographically located near you.