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Vacation Trends - Canada - October 2014

“Given their preference for booking last-minute vacations, it is important for deal or booking sites to provide Quebecers with the ability to research, review and book trips in their native tongue, which is typically French Canadian.”
– Jason Praw, Senior Lifestyle Analyst

This report looks at the following issues:

  • Increasing travel among less affluent Canadians
  • Engaging Canada’s aging population with tailored travel options
  • Focusing on boosting Quebecers’ number of trips
  • Focusing on domestic travel

 

The majority of Canadians are travelling regularly, with over a third taking over three trips annually, and doing so in a variety of ways, highlighting their zest for travel. While the vast majority of recent vacations include a spouse or a partner, many trips also comprise at least one child, underlining the need for travel companies to cater to both family and adult-only needs.
 
Nevertheless, due to the aging Canadian population, travel companies and organizations also need to remain fully attuned with the needs of this growing older demographic, for example by using tours which include fewer changes of hotels, accommodation closer to key attractions and more convenient guided walking tours. While less affluent vacationers and Quebecers present travel operators with distinct challenges, their focus should remain with
 
Canadian families, who travel up to 20% more than non-parents. As such, vacation companies will also have to maintain strong interest from younger consumers and especially families who are looking for new things to do with their kids on their holidays. Since Canadian parents’ travel plans are often tied to their children’s school schedules and extra-curricular activities, vacation companies should look to reach this demographic with ‘early-bird’ type deals for time periods in which they know kids may be free (ie spring or winter break, summer and/or long weekends).

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Table of contents

  1. Introduction

      • Methodology
        • Abbreviations
        • Executive Summary

            • Market Drivers
              • Figure 1: Projected trends in the age structure of the Canadian population, 2014-19
            • The consumer
              • Three quarters of Canadians are annual travellers
                • Figure 2: Trips taken and planned, July 2014
              • Longer winter trips are popular among Canadians
                • Figure 3: Vacation duration by season, July 2014
              • Canadians are most likely to travel with their spouse or partner
                • Canadians are most likely to visit friends and/or relatives on vacation
                  • Figure 4: Types of trips taken by Canadians, July 2014
                • Three quarters of travellers prioritize cost/budget when travelling
                  • Figure 5: Attitudes towards travel, July 2014
                • What we think
                • Issues and Insights

                    • Increasing travel among less affluent Canadians
                      • The facts
                        • The implications
                          • Engaging Canada’s aging population with tailored travel options
                            • The facts
                              • The implications
                                • Focusing on boosting Quebecers’ number of trips
                                  • The facts
                                    • The implications
                                      • Focusing on domestic travel
                                        • The facts
                                          • The implications
                                          • Trend Application

                                              • Trend: Switch Off
                                                • Trend: FSTR/HYPR
                                                  • Trend: Prove It
                                                  • Market Drivers

                                                    • Key points
                                                      • Demographic overview
                                                        • Canadian population count
                                                          • Figure 6: Share of population of Canada, by territory/province, 2014
                                                          • Figure 7: Average January and July temperatures in selected cities
                                                        • Canada’s population is expected to age in the coming years
                                                          • Figure 8: Projected trends in the age structure of the Canadian population, 2014-19
                                                        • Economic overview
                                                          • Canadian economy to pick up speed, but risks remain
                                                            • Figure 9: Canada’s GDP, by quarter, 2008-14
                                                            • Figure 10: Annual average exchange rates for the Canadian dollar vs selected currencies, 2011-14
                                                          • Income and savings on the rise
                                                            • Figure 11: Household disposable incomes and savings in Canada, 2008-14
                                                          • Travel-specific overview
                                                            • Canadians fare poorly in terms of paid vacation leave
                                                              • Gasoline and jet fuel prices continue to increase…
                                                                • Figure 12: Gasoline and jet fuel price per gallon ($CDN), September 2009–September 2014
                                                              • … as does the cost of passports
                                                              • Companies and Products

                                                                  • Brick and mortar travel agencies
                                                                    • Flight Centre
                                                                      • Transat
                                                                        • Vacation packages from airlines
                                                                          • Air Canada Vacations
                                                                            • WestJet Vacations
                                                                              • Online travel agencies and price comparison websites
                                                                                • Priceline
                                                                                  • Travelocity
                                                                                    • TripAdvisor Canada
                                                                                      • Expedia
                                                                                        • Mobile apps for travel
                                                                                        • Brand Communication and Promotion

                                                                                          • Key points
                                                                                            • Viking River Cruises emerges as the most prevalent direct mailer
                                                                                              • Figure 13: Top direct mailers, mail volume in millions in the travel and leisure category, August 2013-August 2014
                                                                                              • Figure 14: Top email senders, travel and leisure email campaigns, August 2013-August 2014,
                                                                                              • Figure 15: Number of online ads in the travel and leisure category, August 2013-August 2014
                                                                                              • Figure 16: Number of print campaigns in the travel and leisure category, August 2013-2014
                                                                                            • Featured campaigns from Mintel Comperemedia
                                                                                              • Travel Deals from Viking River Cruises
                                                                                                • Air New Zealand
                                                                                                  • Tourism Saskatchewan
                                                                                                  • The Consumer – Canadians’ Past and Future Trips

                                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                                      • Three quarters of Canadians are annual travellers
                                                                                                        • Figure 17: Trips taken and planned, July 2014
                                                                                                      • Canadian parents tend to travel more
                                                                                                          • Figure 18: Planned trips, by presence of children, July 2014
                                                                                                        • Travel marketers should target Canadians by age on a seasonal basis
                                                                                                            • Figure 19: Seasonal trips taken, by age, July 2014
                                                                                                          • Summer is the most popular time to travel
                                                                                                              • Figure 20: Trips taken and planned, July 2014
                                                                                                              • Figure 21: Summer trips taken and planned, July 2014
                                                                                                            • About a third of Canadians take one or two fall trips per year
                                                                                                                • Figure 22: Fall trips taken and planned, July 2014
                                                                                                              • More Canadians expect to travel this winter
                                                                                                                  • Figure 23: Winter trips taken and planned, July 2014
                                                                                                                • Spring break likely fuelling multiple trips among 18-24-year-olds
                                                                                                                    • Figure 24: Spring trips taken and planned, July 2014
                                                                                                                • The Consumer – Vacation Duration

                                                                                                                  • Key points
                                                                                                                    • Longer winter trips are popular among Canadians
                                                                                                                      • Figure 25: Vacation duration by season, July 2014
                                                                                                                    • Older Canadians are most likely to take longer trips
                                                                                                                      • Household income does not affect travel as expected
                                                                                                                      • The Consumer – Vacation Destinations

                                                                                                                        • Key points
                                                                                                                          • Domestic travel is the most popular for Canadians
                                                                                                                            • Figure 26: Canadians’ vacation destinations, July 2014
                                                                                                                        • The Consumer – Travel Companions

                                                                                                                          • Key points
                                                                                                                            • Canadians are most likely to travel with their spouse or partner
                                                                                                                              • Figure 27: Travel companions, July 2014
                                                                                                                          • The Consumer – Types of Vacation

                                                                                                                            • Key points
                                                                                                                              • Canadians are most likely to visit friends and/or relatives on vacation
                                                                                                                                • Figure 28: Types of trips taken by Canadians, July 2014
                                                                                                                              • Nature-based trips also taken by three in ten
                                                                                                                                • Other types of vacations are taken by fewer than one in five
                                                                                                                                  • A third of travellers have taken three or more types of vacation over the past 12 months
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 29: Repertoire of types of trips taken by Canadians, July 2014
                                                                                                                                    • Correspondence analysis
                                                                                                                                      • Methodology
                                                                                                                                        • Canada is most associated with visiting friends and/or family
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 30: Correspondence Analysis: types of vacations by destination, July 2014
                                                                                                                                        • The Consumer – Attitudes Towards Travel

                                                                                                                                          • Key points
                                                                                                                                            • Summary of attitudes towards travel
                                                                                                                                              • Figure 31: Attitudes towards travel, July 2014
                                                                                                                                            • Vacation activities important to most Canadians’ destination decisions
                                                                                                                                              • Figure 32: Attitudes towards travel destinations, July 2014
                                                                                                                                            • Three quarters of Canadians focus on budget when planning vacations
                                                                                                                                              • Figure 33: Attitudes towards travel planning, July 2014
                                                                                                                                            • Online reviews are important to over half of Canadians
                                                                                                                                              • Figure 34: Attitudes towards travel motivations, July 2014
                                                                                                                                          • The Consumer – Vacation Trends and Chinese Canadians

                                                                                                                                            • Key points
                                                                                                                                              • Chinese Canadians are more likely than average to travel in the summer
                                                                                                                                                • Figure 35: Summer travel: Chinese Canadians against overall population, July 2014
                                                                                                                                              • Chinese Canadians are far more likely to travel south of the border
                                                                                                                                                • Figure 36: Travel to selected destinations: Chinese Canadians against overall population, July 2014
                                                                                                                                              • Chinese Canadians are more likely to pre-plan aspects of their holiday
                                                                                                                                                • Figure 37: Agreement with selected attitudes towards travel: Chinese Canadians against overall population, July 2014
                                                                                                                                            • The Consumer – Target Groups

                                                                                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                                                                                • Four target groups
                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 38: Target groups for vacation trends, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                • Enthusiasts (28%)
                                                                                                                                                  • Planners (25%)
                                                                                                                                                    • Apathetics (24%)
                                                                                                                                                      • Conservatives (23%)
                                                                                                                                                      • Appendix – The Consumer – Canadians’ Past and Future Trips

                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 39: Trips taken and planned, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                        • Trips in the past 12 months
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 40: Trips taken in the past 12 months: any season, by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 41: Summer trips taken in the past 12 months, by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 42: Fall trips taken in the past 12 months, by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 43: Winter trips taken in the past 12 months, by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 44: Spring trips taken in the past 12 months, by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                        • Trips in the next 12 months
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 45: Trips planned in the next 12 months: Any season, by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 46: Summer trips planned in the next 12 months, by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 47: Fall trips planned in the next 12 months, by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 48: Winter trips planned in the next 12 months, by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 49: Spring trips planned in the next 12 months, by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                      • Appendix – The Consumer – Vacation Duration

                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 50: Vacation duration, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 51: Vacation duration: any trip (net), by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 52: Vacation duration: Summer, by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 53: Vacation duration: Fall, by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 54: Vacation duration: Winter, by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 55: Vacation duration: Spring, by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                      • Appendix – The Consumer – Vacation Destinations

                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 56: Vacation destinations among Canadians, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 57: Most popular vacation destinations among Canadians by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 58: Next most popular vacation destinations among Canadians by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 59: Vacation destinations among Canadians, by any past trips in last 12 months, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 60: Vacation destinations among Canadians, by vacation duration: any trip, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 61: Vacation destinations among Canadians, by most popular travel companions, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 62: Vacation destinations among Canadians, by other travel companions, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 63: Vacation destinations among Canadians, by most popular vacation type, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 64: Vacation destinations among Canadians, by other vacation type, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                      • Appendix – The Consumer – Travel Companions

                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 65: Travel companions, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 66: Most common travel companions by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 67: Other travel companions by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 68: Travel companions, by past trips in last 12 months – Any, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 69: Travel companions, by any vacation duration, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 70: Travel companions, by most popular vacation types, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 71: Travel companions, by other vacation types, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                      • Appendix – The Consumer – Types of Vacation

                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 72: Types of trips taken by Canadians, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 73: Most popular types of trips taken by Canadians, by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 74: Other types of trips taken by Canadians, by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                        • Repertoire analysis
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 75: Repertoire of types of trips taken by Canadians by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 76: Repertoire of types of trips taken by Canadians by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 77: Types of trips taken by Canadians, by any trips in last 12 months, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 78: Types of trips taken by Canadians, by any vacation duration, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 79: Types of trips taken by Canadians, by most popular vacation destinations, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 80: Types of trips taken by Canadians, by next most popular vacation destinations, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 81: Type of trips taken by Canadians, by most common travel companions, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 82: Type of trips taken by Canadians, by other travel companions, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                      • Appendix – The Consumer – Attitudes Towards Travel

                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 83: Attitudes towards travel, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 84: Agreement with the statements ‘Cost/budget is the biggest consideration in choosing a travel destination’ and ‘I enjoy planning vacations’ by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 85: Agreement with the statements ‘I/we prefer to plan activities for vacation prior to arrival’ and ‘Activities I/we can do while on vacation are most important in my destination decision’ by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 86: Agreement with the statements ‘Reviews on sites like TripAdvisor are important to me’ and ‘I am concerned about safety when traveling outside Canada, by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 87: Agreement with the statements ‘I prefer to return to destinations which I have previously visited’ and ‘I subscribe or often look at travel deal sites/flash-sale (eg travelzoo.ca, WagJag Travel, Groupon Getaways)’ by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 88: Agreement with the statements ‘I prefer to drive to my travel destination’ and ‘I am happy to wait to the ‘last minute’ to plan my vacation’ by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 89: Agreement with the statements ‘I prefer travelling with vacation companies (eg Flight Centre, selloffvacations.com)’ and ‘My vacation companions (eg spouse, children, friends, etc) typically choose the destination’ by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                      • Appendix – The Consumer – Vacation Trends and Chinese Canadians

                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 90: Selected demographics, White/Caucasian population vs Chinese Canadians, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                      • Appendix – The Consumer – Target Groups

                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 91: Target groups, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 92: Target groups, by demographics, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 93: Trips taken and planned, by target groups, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 94: Vacation duration, by target groups, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 95: Vacation destination, by target groups, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 96: Travel companions, by target groups, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 97: Type of vacation, by target groups, July 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 98: Attitudes towards travel, by target groups, July 2014

                                                                                                                                                      Companies Covered

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

                                                                                                                                                      Vacation Trends - Canada - October 2014

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