Shaken & Stirred - Influential Brand Profiling and Positioning

“Over half of the UK begins planning a holiday on their mobile” / Hitwise Research

Research from Hitwise, a division of Connexity, today reveals mobiles as the device of choice for budding UK travellers, with over half (52%) of visits to travel ‘destination’ sites made from a mobile.

Once booked, British holiday makers continue to plan their trip via a mobile device, with seven in ten (72%) researching ‘things to do’ from their smartphone.

The Hitwise data reveals Brits kick off Summer holiday searches at the beginning of May, with top destinations revealed as Spain and Tenerife, whilst Cornwall and Wales secure the top spot for British destinations. The number of UK people looking to take a trip to London, however, has declined 11 per cent, yet remains the third most popular holiday destination for American travellers[i].

International Search share change YOY UK Search share change YOY
Spain 36% Cornwall 19%
Tenerife 65% Wales 34%
Portugal 41% Scotland 18%
Italy 33% Devon 12%
Malta 77% Norfolk 23%
France -12% London -11%

The research also highlighted how Brits are increasingly searching for warning related travel queries and flight cancellations. This is coupled with a notable decline in searches for Egypt (-47%), Turkey (-24%) and France (-15%), potentially due to recent terror attack concerns and economic/political unrest.

Destination Search share increase Destination Search share decrease
Iceland 124% Egypt -47%
Bora Bora 105% Turkey -24%
Fuerteventura 99% Greece -15%
Edinburgh 84% Dubai -15%
Malta 77% France -12%

When it comes to accommodation, affluent 18-34 year olds are most likely to head to sharing economy sites such as AirBnB use means of travel such as the Eurostar. Suburban families, however, search with a view to staying in places such as Centre Parks and plan to stay in home shares, more so than those younger and without children.

Young City Prosperity[ii] (aged 18-34) Over Indexed Domestic Success[iii] (aged 35+) Over Indexed +3.9X +2.1X +3.1X +1.8X +2.4X +1.8X +2.3X +1.8X +2.3X +1.7X

Nigel Wilson, managing director at Hitwise, says: “Cheaper flights, mobile phones and internet connectivity has significantly changed how we travel, but most importantly it’s changed how we go about booking trips.

Today’s Hitwise research highlights the importance for brands to provide an efficient mobile experience, to serve planners with a relevant online experience that delivers the right content, at the right time, on the right device.

Brands must take into consideration recent sensitivities within the travel sector and ensure location specific information is always accessible, so consumers can travel with peace of mind. The Hitwise data provides insight into the desires and expectations of UK travellers and brands must ensure they adapt their campaigns to suit the preferences of different audience groups.”

Graphics by Shutterstock