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Travel Retail - UK - June 2015

"In most instances the primary reason for visiting travel hubs is not to visit stores: retailing is an added extra as part of a journey. The task for retailers in such hubs is to appeal to consumers in the limited time they spend there and provide retail formats tailored to the way in which consumers travel through each of the distinct hubs. It is crucial that retailers that operate in travel hubs do not apply a one size fits all approach to their formats; each hub possesses inherent strengths and weakness for retailing and formats must be tailored to fit the needs of the in-transit consumer base travelling through them."
- Nick Carroll, Retail Analyst

This report discusses the following key topics:

  • Motorway service areas: More encouragement needed to visit 
  • Rail stations: Diversifying the retail offering 
  • Airports: Making the most of a captive audience

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Table of contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Areas covered in this report
      • Executive Summary

        • Rail travel on the rise
          • Figure 1: Average number of trips taken per person per year, by car/van and surface rail, 1995-2013
        • Motorways continue to increase capacity
          • Figure 2: Average daily motor vehicle flow for major sections of the motorway network, 2013
        • Airport passenger numbers recover following a dip
          • Figure 3: Total passenger numbers at reporting UK airports, 2003-14
        • Travel hubs visited
          • Figure 4: Travel hubs visited in the last 12 months, March 2015
        • Types of trip taken
          • Figure 5: Reasons for visiting a travel hub in the past 12 months, March 2015
        • Purchasing shows a bias to foodservice
          • Figure 6: Outlets purchased from, by type of travel hub, March 2015
        • Railways show the highest frequency of outlet visitation
          • Figure 7: Frequency of outlet visits in travel hubs, March 2015
        • Factors that would improve the shopping experience
          • Figure 8: Factors that would improve the shopping experience at travel hubs, March 2015
        • What we think
        • Issues and Insights

          • Motorway service areas: More encouragement needed to visit
            • The facts
              • The implications
                • Rail stations: Diversifying the retail offering
                  • The facts
                    • The implications
                      • Airports: Making the most of a captive audience
                        • The facts
                          • The implications
                          • The Market – What You Need to Know

                            • Economic factors boost the travel market
                              • As car usage declines, rail travel is on the rise
                                • London gains the highest levels of station footfall
                                  • The MSA network benefits from an increase in capacity
                                    • Rising passenger numbers at UK airports
                                      • Holidaymakers dominate at Gatwick and Manchester
                                      • Market Drivers

                                        • Projected rise in number of 25-34s bodes well for travel retail
                                          • Figure 9: Trends in the age structure of the UK population, 2009-19
                                        • Consumers begin to feel more confident about their finances
                                          • Railway and motorway
                                            • Cars prevail over other transport modes
                                              • Figure 10: Trip distance per person per year by main mode and purpose, 2013
                                            • Rail travel on the rise
                                              • Figure 11: Average number of trips taken per person per year, by car/van and surface rail, 1995-2013
                                              • Figure 12: Average distance travelled by car/van and surface rail, 1995-2013
                                            • Liverpool Street has the highest footfall
                                              • Figure 13: Footfall breakdown for selected Network Rail stations, 2014
                                            • Rising number of cars on UK roads
                                              • Figure 14: New and used car registrations, 2009-14
                                            • Increasing capacity on the MSA network
                                              • Figure 15: Average daily motor vehicle flow for major sections of the motorway network, 2013
                                            • Reason for stopping at roadside service outlets
                                              • Figure 16: Reasons for stopping at roadside service station, August 2014
                                            • Airports
                                              • Growth in air passenger traffic
                                                • Figure 17: Air passengers at selected UK airports, 2010-14
                                                • Figure 18: Total passenger numbers at reporting UK airports, 2003-14
                                                • Figure 19: Increase in air passengers for the largest UK airports, 2013 -14
                                              • Reasons for travel at the major airports
                                                • Figure 20: Purpose of travel at selected UK airports, 2013
                                            • Key Players – What You Need to Know

                                              • Temporary retail space
                                                • Vending machines
                                                  • Click-and-collect
                                                    • MSAs need to revitalise their offer
                                                      • Consumer desire for branded food outlets
                                                        • Favouring local producers
                                                          • Rail stations become retail destinations
                                                            • Airports invest in terminal upgrades
                                                            • Innovations

                                                              • Motorway service areas
                                                                • MSA favours local produce
                                                                  • Figure 21: Freshly baked bread at Tebay Services, Cumbria
                                                                • Supporting the local community
                                                                  • Figure 22: Gloucester services, 2015
                                                                • Hot food vending
                                                                  • Tweet to eat
                                                                    • Rail stations
                                                                      • Shopping app
                                                                        • Click-and-collect
                                                                          • Engaging with a captive audience
                                                                            • Shops pop up at Old Street
                                                                              • Vending machine for fresh flowers
                                                                                • Figure 23: RockFlower vending machine in Blackfriars tube station
                                                                              • Airports
                                                                                • Vending machines
                                                                                  • Figure 24: Benefit vending machine, McCarran International Airport, Las Vegas, January 2014
                                                                                • Yeti ‘ice cold’ retail experience
                                                                                  • Beacon technology
                                                                                    • Virtual shopping walls
                                                                                      • Seasonal events
                                                                                        • Airport app driving customer loyalty
                                                                                          • Mobile working space
                                                                                            • Pop-up space
                                                                                            • Travel Point Operators

                                                                                              • Motorway service area (MSA) operators
                                                                                                • Figure 25: Summary of the UK MSA operators, 2015
                                                                                              • Non-fuel sales drive growth
                                                                                                • Figure 26: Revenues of the leading MSA operators, 2010-14
                                                                                                • Figure 27: Operating profits of the leading MSA operators, 2010-14
                                                                                              • Acquisition activity
                                                                                                • Fast food outlets give unhealthy image
                                                                                                  • Coffee brands improve quality perception
                                                                                                    • Capturing the business traveller market
                                                                                                      • Government scheme to improve roadside services
                                                                                                        • Railway operators
                                                                                                          • Network rail
                                                                                                            • Financial performance
                                                                                                              • Figure 28: Network Rail financial performance, 2010-13
                                                                                                            • Retail revenues
                                                                                                              • Figure 29: Like-for-like retail sales increase at Network Rail Managed Stations compared to the British Retail Consortium’s high street figures, 2012-14
                                                                                                            • Doddle
                                                                                                              • Rising retail space to bump up revenues
                                                                                                                • Figure 30: Network Rail retail income forecasts, 2014-19
                                                                                                              • Retail space at NRMS
                                                                                                                • Figure 31: Retail space at Network Rail managed stations, 2015
                                                                                                                • Figure 32: Retail space at Network Rail managed stations, 2015
                                                                                                              • Train operating companies
                                                                                                                • Figure 33: Stations operated by train operating companies in the UK, 2013/14
                                                                                                              • Airport operators
                                                                                                                • Heathrow (SP) Limited
                                                                                                                  • Gatwick Airport Limited
                                                                                                                    • Manchester Airports Group
                                                                                                                      • Leading airport operators’ financial performance
                                                                                                                        • Figure 34: Leading airport operators’ revenues, 2010-14
                                                                                                                        • Figure 35: Leading airport groups’ operating profits, 2010-14
                                                                                                                      • Breakdown of revenues
                                                                                                                        • Figure 36: Leading airport groups’ breakdown of revenues, 2013/14
                                                                                                                      • Retail revenue in detail
                                                                                                                        • Figure 37: Leading airport groups’ retail revenues, 2010-14
                                                                                                                        • Figure 38: Breakdown of Heathrow’s retail revenues, 2014
                                                                                                                        • Figure 39: Breakdown of Gatwick’s retail revenues, 2013/14
                                                                                                                      • Retail units
                                                                                                                        • Figure 40: Breakdown of retail units in the major airports, 2015
                                                                                                                    • The Consumer – What You Need to Know

                                                                                                                      • Hub visitation and reasons for visit
                                                                                                                        • MSAs show the highest level of purchasing
                                                                                                                          • Railway outlets most frequently visited
                                                                                                                            • MSAs show a higher level of planned purchasing
                                                                                                                              • Consumers spending less at railway stations
                                                                                                                                • Airport visitors allow more time to visit outlets
                                                                                                                                  • Consumers are looking for variety at travel hubs
                                                                                                                                  • Travel Hubs Visited and Purpose of Visit

                                                                                                                                      • Figure 41: Travel hubs visited in the last 12 months, March 2015
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 42: Travel hubs visited in the last 12 months, by age, March 2015
                                                                                                                                    • Type of trip
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 43: Reasons for visiting a travel hub in the past 12 months, March 2015
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 44: Reasons for visiting a travel hub in the past 12 months, March 2015
                                                                                                                                    • Outlets Purchased from in Travel Hubs

                                                                                                                                        • Figure 45: Outlets purchased from, by type of travel hub, March 2015
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 46: Travel hubs visited versus the percentage of visitors who have purchased any goods, by travel hub, March 2015
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 47: Any purchase, by type of trip, March 2015
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 48: Outlets purchased from, by travel hub and by age, March 2015
                                                                                                                                      • Outlets purchased from: Motorway service areas
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 49: Outlets purchased from in a motorway service area in the last 12 months, March 2015
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 50: Repertoire of outlets used at a motorway service area, March 2015
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 51: Repertoire of outlets used at a motorway service area, by outlets purchased from, March 2015
                                                                                                                                      • Outlets purchased from: Railway stations
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 52: Outlets purchased from in a railway station in the last 12 months, March 2015
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 53: Repertoire of outlets used at a railway station, March 2015
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 54: Repertoire of outlets used at a railway station, by outlets purchased from, March 2015
                                                                                                                                      • Outlets purchased from: Airport terminals
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 55: Outlets purchased from in an airport terminal in the last 12 months, March 2015
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 56: Repertoire of outlets used at an airport terminal, March 2015
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 57: Repertoire of outlets used at an airport terminal, by outlets purchased from, March 2015
                                                                                                                                    • Frequency of Visiting Outlets in Travel Hubs

                                                                                                                                        • Figure 58: Frequency of outlet visits in travel hubs, March 2015
                                                                                                                                      • Male consumers are more frequent visitors
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 59: Gender differences of consumers who have visited an outlet in a travel hub once a month or more, March 2015
                                                                                                                                      • Millennials: A key market for travel hub outlets
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 60: Generational differences of consumers who have visited an outlet in a travel hub once a month or more, March 2015
                                                                                                                                      • Commuters: A more frequent visitor in railway stations
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 61: Frequency of outlet visitation in railway stations, by type of trip, March 2015
                                                                                                                                    • Shopping Behaviour in Travel Hubs

                                                                                                                                        • Shopping behaviour in Motorway Service Areas (MSAs)
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 62: Agreement with behavioural statements regarding motorway service areas, March 2015
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 63: Agreement with behavioural statements regarding planned and impulse purchasing in motorway service areas, by gender, March 2015
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 64: Agreement with behavioural statements regarding motorway service areas, by generation, March 2015
                                                                                                                                        • Shopping behaviour in railway stations
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 65: Agreement with behavioural statements regarding railway stations, March 2015
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 66: Agreement with behavioural statements regarding railway stations, by generation, March 2015
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 67: Agreement with the statement ‘I would like to see more vending machines available at railway stations’, by location lived in, March 2015
                                                                                                                                        • Shopping behaviour in airports
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 68: Agreement with behavioural statements regarding airport terminals, March 2015
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 69: Agreement with behavioural statements regarding airport terminals, by generation, March 2015
                                                                                                                                      • Attitudes towards Travel Retail

                                                                                                                                          • Figure 70: Factors that would improve the shopping experience at travel hubs, March 2015
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 71: Factors that would improve the shopping experience, crossed with travel hubs visited, March 2015
                                                                                                                                        • Does purpose of visit impact attitudes towards travel retail?
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 72: Attitudes towards travel retail of rail station visitors, by purpose of travelling, March 2015
                                                                                                                                        • More comfortable seating would improve the experience
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 73: Demographic breakdown of consumers that said more comfortable seating would improve the shopping experience at travel hubs, March 2015
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 74: Percentage of visitors to each type of travel hub that said more comfortable seating would improve the shopping experience at travel hubs, March 2015
                                                                                                                                        • Consumers seek variety
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 75: Demographic breakdown of consumers that said a greater variety of shops would improve the shopping experience at travel hubs, March 2015
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 76: Demographic breakdown of consumers that said a greater variety of food outlets would improve the shopping experience at travel hubs, March 2015
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 77: Consumer demand for a greater variety of shops and/or foodservice outlets, out of those that have purchased from a shop and/or food service outlet in the past 12 months, March 2015
                                                                                                                                        • Putting healthier food options on the menu
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 78: Demographic breakdown of consumers that said more healthy food options would improve the shopping experience at travel hubs, March 2015
                                                                                                                                        • Shoppers would like to see more independents
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 79: Demographic breakdown of consumers that said more small independent shops would improve the shopping experience at travel hubs, March 2015
                                                                                                                                        • Parents of under-5s want more children’s entertainment
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 80: Percentage of parents that said more children’s entertainment facilities would improve the shopping experience at travel hubs, March 2015
                                                                                                                                      • Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

                                                                                                                                        • Data sources
                                                                                                                                          • Financial definitions
                                                                                                                                            • Abbreviations

                                                                                                                                            Companies Covered

                                                                                                                                            To learn more about the companies covered in this report please contact us.

                                                                                                                                            Travel Retail - UK - June 2015

                                                                                                                                            £2,195.00 (Excl.Tax)