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Technology and Irish Tourism - Ireland - July 2015

“Online sources are the preferred method for booking a holiday or short break in Ireland. Consumers in NI show greater usage of third party websites, such as Expedia, while RoI consumers prefer to book directly with service providers. As such, Irish tourism companies should look to adopt a region specific strategy that places the emphasis of their marketing efforts on the main channels used within NI and RoI to drive bookings and usage of their services.”
– James Wilson, Research Analyst

This report answers the following questions:

  • Which online information sources did Irish consumers use to book their most recent holiday or short breaks?
  • How did Irish consumers book aspects of their most recent trip?
  • What opportunities does the high level of technology usage in Ireland hold for tourism companies?
  • Is there an opportunity for a technology-free tourism experience?

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Table of contents

  1. Introduction

      • Key themes of the report
        • Data sources
          • Definition
            • Abbreviations
            • Executive Summary

                • Market factors
                  • Internet remains the main driver of holidays to Ireland but declines in influence
                    • Deal-of-the-day websites important to Irish tourism industry
                      • Social networks key channel for tourism companies
                        • High device ownership provides opportunities for Irish tourism companies
                          • Review fraud an issue for the travel industry
                            • Companies, brands and innovations
                              • The consumer
                                • Irish consumers opting to stay ‘at home’ for short breaks
                                  • Figure 1: Where last short break (1-3 days) taken, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                • Europe preferred for holidays
                                  • Figure 2: Where last holiday (4 or more days) taken, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                • Customer review websites the main online information source
                                  • Figure 3: Online information sources used when booking most recent short break or holiday, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                • Family, friends colleagues a key offline source for Irish consumers
                                  • Figure 4: Offline information sources used when booking most recent short break or holiday, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                • Irish consumers prefer online channels to book trips
                                  • Figure 5: Sources used to book any aspect of most recent trip, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                • Access to Wi-Fi the most important issue for Irish consumers
                                  • Figure 6: Agreement with statements relating to technology and tourism, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                • What we think
                                • Issues and Insights

                                    • Which online information sources did Irish consumers use to book their most recent holiday or short breaks?
                                      • The facts
                                        • The implications
                                          • How did Irish consumers book aspects of their most recent trip?
                                            • The facts
                                              • The implications
                                                • What opportunities does the high level of technology usage in Ireland hold for tourism companies?
                                                  • The facts
                                                    • The implications
                                                      • Is there an opportunity for a technology-free tourism experience?
                                                        • The facts
                                                          • The implications
                                                          • Market Overview

                                                            • Key points
                                                              • Internet’s influence of holidays to RoI continues to fall
                                                                • Figure 7: Information sources that influenced choice of RoI as a holiday destination, by region, RoI, 2012-14
                                                                • Figure 7: Information sources used when planning a holiday to RoI, by region, RoI, 2012-14
                                                              • NI consumers show higher usage of deal-of-the-day websites for domestic trips
                                                                • Figure 7: Aspects of holidays/short breaks within Ireland where deal-of-the-day service or website used to book in the last 12 months, NI and RoI, October 2014
                                                              • Facebook is Ireland’s favourite social network
                                                                • Figure 7: Social networks used at least once per week, NI and RoI, March 2015
                                                              • Social media helps Tourism Ireland promote NI to worldwide audience
                                                                • Internet-enabled device ownership high
                                                                  • Figure 7: Ownership of or access to mobile technology devices, NI and RoI, July 2014-July 2015
                                                                • Credibility of online reviews being questioned
                                                                  • Authorities clamping down on fake reviews
                                                                    • Holiday fraud also a concern for travel industry
                                                                    • Market in Context

                                                                      • Key points
                                                                        • Case study: British Airways
                                                                          • Case study: Dublin Airport Authority
                                                                            • Case study: easyJet
                                                                              • Case study: Ryanair
                                                                                • Case study: Tourism Ireland
                                                                                • Strengths and Weaknesses

                                                                                  • Strengths
                                                                                    • Weaknesses
                                                                                    • Companies and Innovations

                                                                                      • Key points
                                                                                        • Examples of innovation
                                                                                          • Japanese hotel introduces the robot concierge
                                                                                            • Hotels moving to keyless systems
                                                                                              • Beats Music available on-board Southwest Airlines
                                                                                                • Tourism authorities
                                                                                                  • Fáilte Ireland
                                                                                                    • Tourism Northern Ireland (formerly Northern Ireland Tourist Board)
                                                                                                      • Tourism Ireland
                                                                                                        • Travel websites
                                                                                                          • Airbnb
                                                                                                            • Expedia
                                                                                                              • Hotels.com
                                                                                                                • Groupon
                                                                                                                  • Lonely Planet
                                                                                                                    • TripAdvisor
                                                                                                                      • Airlines
                                                                                                                        • easyJet
                                                                                                                          • Flybe
                                                                                                                            • Ryanair
                                                                                                                            • The Consumer – Last Holiday or Short Break Taken by Irish Consumers

                                                                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                                                                • Most Irish consumers took a holiday or short break in the last 12 months
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 7: When last holiday or short break taken, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                • Working consumers most likely to have taken a short break or holiday in the last three months
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 7: Last holiday or short break taken less than three months ago, by work status and social class, NI and RoI, July 2015
                                                                                                                                • Irish consumers taking short breaks ‘at home’
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 7: Where last short break (1-3 days) taken, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                • Broad appeal among Irish consumers for staycations
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 7: Last short break (1-3 days) taken in Northern Ireland or the Republic of Ireland, by gender and age, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 7: Last short break (1-3 days) taken in Europe, by gender and age, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                • Europe the preferred destination for holidays
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 7: Where last holiday (4 or more days) taken, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                • Irish consumers taking children on European holidays
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 7: Last holiday (4 or more days) taken in Europe, by presence and age of children in the household, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                • Irish consumers booking holidays 2-4 months before travelling
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 7: How long trip was booked before last holiday, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                • Millennials and singles most likely to book trips at short notice, Gen X booking 2-4 months in advance
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 7: How long trip was booked before last short break, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                              • The Consumer – Online Information Sources Used When Booking Most Recent Holiday or Short Break

                                                                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                                                                  • Customer review websites most popular online source when booking short breaks and holidays
                                                                                                                                    • Figure 7: Online information sources used when booking most recent short break or holiday, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                  • Customer review and travel websites, online photos key sources for older Millennials
                                                                                                                                    • Figure 7: Use of customer review websites, travel company websites and online photos as information sources when booking most recent holiday or short break, by age, NI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                    • Figure 7: Use of customer review websites, travel company websites and online photos as information sources when booking most recent holiday or short break, by age, RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                  • Tourist board websites an information source for full-time workers, students and ABC1s
                                                                                                                                    • Figure 7: Use of official tourist board websites (eg nitb.com, failteireland.com) as information sources when booking most recent holiday or short break, by work status and social class, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                  • Deals websites popular with married and affluent consumers
                                                                                                                                    • Figure 7: Use of deals websites (eg Groupon) as information sources when booking most recent holiday or short break, by marital status and social class, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                • The Consumer – Offline Information Sources Used When Booking Most Recent Holiday or Short Break

                                                                                                                                  • Key points
                                                                                                                                    • Family, friends and colleagues important offline source when booking holidays and short breaks
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 7: Use of offline information sources when booking most recent short break or holiday, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                      • Young consumers most likely to seek advice from family, friends and colleagues
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 7: Speaking to family, friends and colleagues when booking most recent short break or holiday, by age, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                    • The Consumer – Sources Used to Book Last Holiday or Short Break

                                                                                                                                      • Key points
                                                                                                                                        • Online sources preferred when booking holidays or short breaks
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 7: Sources used to book any aspect of most recent trip, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                        • Older Millennials and ABC1s key users of online travel agents and comparison websites
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 7: Online sources used to book aspects of most recent holiday or short break, by age and social class, NI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 7: Online sources used to book most recent holiday or short break, by age and social class, RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                      • The Consumer – Attitudes towards Technology in Irish Tourism

                                                                                                                                        • Key points
                                                                                                                                          • Wi-Fi the most important issue for Irish consumers
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Agreement with statements relating to technology and tourism, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                          • Wi-Fi a must for Irish Millennials
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Agreement with the statement 'Wi-Fi is a must at hotels and attractions', by gender and age, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                          • Young consumers more willing to travel with companies providing on-board Wi-Fi
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Agreement with the statement ‘I would be more willing to travel with airlines/transport companies that provide on-board Wi-Fi’, by age, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                          • Smartphones part of the tourism experience for young consumers
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Agreement with selected statements relating to technology and tourism, by age, NI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                          • RoI 25-34s the main users of mobile devices in the tourism experience
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Agreement with selected statements relating to technology and tourism, by age, RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                          • Irish women and affluent consumers most likely to be influenced by reviews on-the-go
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Agreement with the statement ‘Being able to access customer reviews on-the-go would encourage me to visit more restaurants/attractions’, by gender and social class, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Agreement with the statement 'I am wary of the validity of some online reviews of destinations', by gender and social class, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                          • Technology takes away from young RoI consumers’ tourism experience
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Agreement with the statement 'Using smartphones/tablets while on holiday or a short break takes away from the experience', by gender and age, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Agreement with the statement 'I would be interested in technology-free (ie no Wi-Fi or use of gadget) tourist sites’, by gender and age, NI and RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                        • Appendix

                                                                                                                                          • NI Toluna data
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: When last holiday or short break taken, by demographics, NI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Where last short break (1-3 days) taken, by demographics, NI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Where last holiday (4 or more days) taken, by demographics, NI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: How long booking was made before last short break trip, by demographics, NI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: How long booking was made before last short break trip, by demographics, NI, May 2015 (continued)
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: How long booking was made before last holiday trip, by demographics, NI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: How long booking was made before last holiday trip, by demographics, NI, May 2015 (continued)
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Online information sources used when booking most recent short break or holiday, by demographics, NI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Online information sources used when booking most recent short break or holiday, by demographics, NI, May 2015 (continued)
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Offline information sources used when booking most recent short break or holiday, by demographics, NI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Offline information sources used when booking most recent short break or holiday, by demographics, NI, May 2015 (continued)
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Sources used to book any aspect of most recent trip, by demographics, NI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Sources used to book any aspect of most recent trip, by demographics, NI, May 2015 (continued)
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Agreement with statements relating to technology and tourism, by demographics, NI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Agreement with statements relating to technology and tourism, by demographics, NI, May 2015 (continued)
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Agreement with statements relating to technology and tourism, by demographics, NI, May 2015 (continued)
                                                                                                                                          • RoI Toluna data
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: When last holiday or short break taken, by demographics, RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Where last short break (1-3 days) taken, by demographics, RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Where last holiday (4 or more days) taken, by demographics, RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: How long booking was made before last short break trip, by demographics, RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: How long booking was made before last short break trip, by demographics, RoI, May 2015 (continued)
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: How long booking was made before last holiday trip, by demographics, RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: How long booking was made before last holiday trip, by demographics, RoI, May 2015 (continued)
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Online information sources used when booking most recent short break or holiday, by demographics, RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Online information sources used when booking most recent short break or holiday, by demographics, RoI, May 2015 (continued)
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Offline information sources used when booking most recent short break or holiday, by demographics, RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Offline information sources used when booking most recent short break or holiday, by demographics, RoI, May 2015 (continued)
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Sources used to book any aspect of most recent trip, by demographics, RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Sources used to book any aspect of most recent trip, by demographics, RoI, May 2015 (continued)
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Agreement with statements relating to technology and tourism, by demographics, RoI, May 2015
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Agreement with statements relating to technology and tourism, by demographics, RoI, May 2015 (continued)
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 1: Agreement with statements relating to technology and tourism, by demographics, RoI, May 2015 (continued)

                                                                                                                                        Companies Covered

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                                                                                                                                        Technology and Irish Tourism - Ireland - July 2015

                                                                                                                                        US $1,360.54 (Excl.Tax)