Price gazumps standards for travellers in Webloyalty customer sentiment research

Price remains the top priority for British holidaymakers, latest consumer research for reward programme operator Webloyalty has found.

A survey of more than 2,000 people by researchers from Conlumino found price is the most important factor for both the air travel and hotel parts of a holiday.

This is despite customers expecting to have more disposable income to spend on travel this year due to the recovering UK economy.

The research found that 47% of respondents consider travel to be simply functional, a means of getting from one point to another, and should be done at the lowest cost.

Only 17% of respondents agreed that having a more pleasant in-flight experience might encourage them to upgrade.

Service standards were ranked as the lowest priority for flyers when planning travel.

Those polled indicated they would rather spend more on several cheaper flights in order to get the most from their money.

Conlumino managing director Neil Saunders said: “Although our research has found that travel is an area on which many are willing to spend more this year than in 2013, these new figures suggest that it is quantity rather than quality that consumers will be looking for – more flights for less money.”

Only 13% of respondents said they will fly with full service airlines like British Airways over the next year.

However, half of respondents said they were mistrustful of the hidden charges associated with low-cost airlines.

Behind price the proximity to attractions was the second most important factor when it came to hotels.

User reviews were rated highly as a means of helping to choose which property to stay in while the hotel’s own star rating was the factor considered least important.

“Despite this year looking more positive for consumer spending it is still the economical travel and accommodation options that are coming out winning for British holidaymakers”, said Guy Chiswick, managing director of Webloyalty Northern Europe.

“The importance of user reviews and recommendations are of paramount importance to those in the travel industry, and therefore building rapport with guests and customers and building online spaces where they can share positive experiences will be of immeasurable value to businesses.”

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