Cruise sites dominated by over 55s

The gulf in the average age of users between cruise holiday and other travel websites has been unveiled in a study carried out by online analysts Hitwise.

A survey revealed the travel cruise market attracted a larger share of visits from over-55s than any other category, with more than a third of visitors coming from what is believed to be one of the most lucrative markets in travel.

At the top of a list of sites during April was Celebrity Shore Excursions, which attracted over two-third of users from the 55+ bracket.

Other cruise sites with over half of users nearing a pension age included Celebrity Cruises UK, Page & Moy Cruise Collection, Fred Olsen Cruises and Save N Sail.

Hitwise director of research Heather Hopkins said: “Travel websites generally receive a one-fifth larger share of visits from UK internet users aged 55+ than average and every Travel sub-category attracts a larger share of visits from the 55+ age group.

“Travel is one of the more established e-commerce categories and has proven popular with silver surfers who are both cash rich and time rich.”

General travel sites with high number of over-55s included The Caravan Club, Airlmiles UK, P&O Ferries, Jet2 and Airline Network.

Hopkins warned travel companies looking to reach the so-called Silver Surfers that sites should be “well designed for researching holidays and destinations, as well as for booking”.

“Also, by understanding a site’s audience online, online marketers can more effectively target campaigns and promotions,” she added.

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