Lost in translation? Booking.com research exposes surprising gap between travel ambitions and reality
Despite the world at their fingertips, lingering anxieties prevent many American travelers from making the most of their trips
- Booking.com research reveals that American travelers are keen to push their limits and seek out the new, yet are being held back by language barriers and anxiety
- Almost half (42%) of people today want to be a limitless traveler, someone who does not feel held back from getting the most out of travel, who embraces the new and different and is not afraid to push the boundaries when it comes to traveling
- Yet two thirds (67%) do not believe they are being adventurous enough while on vacation and are missing out on making the most of opportunities while traveling
- Booking.com has collaborated with ili, the world’s fastest offline translation device, to break down language barriers on vacation and help travelers with simple interactions
New York, New York – May 3, 2018 – Technology has transformed how we travel, making thousands of destinations worldwide only seem like a click away. However, new research reveals a significant two thirds (67%) of today’s travelers don’t believe they are making the most of their travel opportunities.
Booking.com, the global leader in connecting travelers with the widest choice of incredible places to stay, has conducted research across more than 20,500 global travelers to uncover the barriers and anxieties which prevent people from making the most of every trip and reveal how they can move to a state of truly limitless travel.
The research shows that despite a world of opportunities, three in ten people (29%) have never felt limitless on vacation and one in 10 (13%) have only ever felt limitless once.
Nevertheless there is a strong desire to be a limitless traveler[i], with almost half (42%) of people expressing that aspiration and over three quarters (78%) wanting to make the most of every travel experience and travel with no regrets.
A common worry is the language barrier, as 44% of respondents agree this can hold them back from planning a trip and 18% are nervous about getting lost without speaking the local language. Travelers also believe they are being held back by struggles to find accommodation (41%) and over a quarter feel anxious about unfamiliar situations when traveling (27%).
[i] Someone who does not feel held back from getting the most out of travel, who embraces the new and different and is not afraid to push the boundaries when it comes to travelling
In a unique collaboration, Booking.com has teamed up with ili, the world’s fastest offline translation device, to offer travelers an exclusive discount on their very own ili device and limited version of Booking.com case www.booking.com/offers/limitlesstraveller. With customer support available in 43 languages, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, Booking.com is an expert at connecting people of different languages and this partnership will further help travelers to overcome their travel concerns around language.
Available in the US, Japan, China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, UK, Canada, New Zealand and Australia, the device can translate your words instantly offline and can be used to enrich communication in situations, such as asking for directions, ordering food in restaurants, going shopping, and seeking recommendations from locals.
The Booking.com research also shows 48% of people want to experience new cultures, 43% want to taste local delicacies, 45% are keen to experience staying somewhere new and 25% want to embrace meeting new people while traveling, which Booking.com and ili can help travelers do.
Overcoming travel trepidations
When asked what would remove travel barriers and anxieties for future trips, the top factors respondents called out were great accommodation options (33%), positive reviews from other travelers (30%), being able to ask questions and directions in the local language (25%) and being able to order their favorite food (22%).
Technology can help overcome these concerns as almost half (49%) of travelers admit to using technology frequently while traveling. As a global leader in digital technology, Booking.com has already brought travelers its pilot Booking Assistant, an Artificial Intelligence chatbot which empowers customers to get first-line support for upcoming bookings, all through a single intuitive chat interface. With over 147 million real guest reviews on Booking.com, travelers can also research and get advice in their own language before they go.
Pushing the limits
One in two (54%) travelers think the best thing about travel is getting outside their comfort zone, confirming that they want more unique travel experiences to push their travel limits. The top getaways which travelers haven’t done before because they are too afraid, but would love to try one day, include:
- Long-distance train (50%)
- Ancestry trip to find out about their heritage (45%)
- Gourmet adventure (38%)
- Mystery trip (36%)
- Volunteering trip (34%)
In addition, the top five trips that people have already been on and would like to go on again, as they allow them to experience travel to the fullest, are:
- Road trip (76%)
- Last-minute trip (46%)
- Solo trip (36%)
- Backpacking or hiking trip (30%)
- Snorkeling/diving (28%)
Research also found traveling without limits isn’t confined to the younger generation. Although 54% of Generation Z (18 to 24 year olds) intend to take a long-distance train journey, Baby Boomers (55 to 64 year olds) are looking to be more cultured with two in five (44%) planning an ancestry trip and or gourmet adventure (37%). In fact, Baby Boomers are most likely to have taken a road trip (79%) or a last-minute trip (43%) in the last year.
Pepijn Rijvers, Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer at Booking.com comments: “Travel can fulfil dreams, exposes us to new experiences, and ultimately enriches our lives for the better. Not only do we want to connect travelers with amazing places to stay, but we also provide knowledge and advice about a destination so that no matter where you choose to go, you can feel inspired to see more, go further and embrace every amazing opportunity along the way. As an industry innovator, we are continuously looking for ways to use the latest technologies to take the friction out of travel and empower people to experience the world, and our collaboration with ili is a great example of how we want to enhance the traveler experience, wherever they want to go and whatever they want to do.”
To receive your own ili device at a discounted rate, visit www.booking.com/offers/limitlesstraveller for more information and your discount code.
For further information, contact the Booking.com US Press Office;
NOTES TO EDITORS
Research commissioned by Booking.com and independently conducted among a sample of adults who have taken a trip in the last 12 months/plan to take a trip in the next 12 months. In total 20,500 respondents were surveyed (1,000+ from Australia, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, China, Brazil, India, the USA, the UK, Russia, Indonesia and Colombia and 500+ each from Japan, New Zealand, Thailand, Argentina, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Hong Kong, Croatia, Taiwan, Mexico, the Netherlands, Sweden, Singapore and Israel.) Respondents completed an online survey in March 2018.
Established in 1996 in Amsterdam, Booking.com B.V. has grown from a small Dutch start-up to one of the largest travel e-commerce companies in the world. Part of Booking Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: BKNG), Booking.com now employs more than 17,000 employees in 198 offices in 70 countries worldwide.
With a mission to empower people to experience the world, Booking.com invests in digital technology that helps take the friction out of travel. At Booking.com, we connect travelers with the world’s largest selection of incredible places to stay, including everything from apartments, vacation homes, and family-run B&Bs to 5-star luxury resorts, tree houses and even igloos. The Booking.com website and mobile apps are available in 43 languages, offer over 27 million total reported listings and cover more than 130,000 destinations in 227 countries and territories worldwide.
Each day, more than 1.5 million room nights are reserved on our platform. So whether traveling for business or leisure, customers can instantly book their ideal place to stay quickly and easily with Booking.com, without booking fees and backed up by our promise to price match. Via our customer experience team, customers can reach Booking.com 24/7 for assistance and support in 43 languages, any time of the day or night.
Ili is the world’s fastest offline translator designed for travelers. It can translate your words into other languages in as little as 0.2 seconds without an internet connection. It’s simple to use, all you need to do is pressing the button and speaking into it.
Developed by Logbar, a Japanese startup, ili has been used by over 50,000 travelers around the world. ili has also received high praise from outlets such as Forbes.
ili gives you a chance to explore different countries in brand new and exciting ways. Shop, dine, and navigate easier than ever thanks to ili’s translation technology. Say hello to the locals and introduce yourself. You’re bound to meet someone special.
ili currently translates from English to Spanish, Mandarin, and Japanese. Updates will be available in the near future.