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Millennials are paving the way for new methods of researching and booking travel, according to The 2017 State of Travel report [download page] from comScore. The study shows that youths’ preferences differ distinctly from their older counterparts when it comes to preferred sites for leisure travel research.

Of 7 types of sites used for leisure travel research, Millennials were most likely to point to travel review sites as their most preferred group. With almost one-fifth (19%) citing these sites as their preference, Millennials were twice as likely as both Gen Xers (11%) and Boomers (9%) to do so.

Youth also demonstrate a far greater affinity than others for social media for research. One in every 10 Millennials surveyed as part of the report said that social networking sites are their preferred travel research destinations. That compares with just 3% of Gen Xers and 1% of Boomers.

By contrast, Millennials are far less likely to count Suppliers as their preferred research destination.

3 in 4 Millennial Leisure Travelers Have Booked Travel on Smartphones

Not surprisingly, Millennials are leading the way in the use of mobile devices to book travel. Fully 73% of leisure travelers in this generation report having used a smartphone to book leisure travel at some point in the past, and an equal proportion have used a tablet to do so.

By comparison, fewer than half of Gen X travelers have used a tablet (47%) or smartphone (38%) to book travel in the past, and those numbers drop even more among Boomers.

Even so, PCs and laptops remain the preferred devices for Millennials when researching and booking hotels, flights and/or cars.

Overall, smartphones (19%) and tablets (8%) together accounted for more than one-quarter of digital travel spend in July. That’s more than 4 times the share from 2014 (6%) and is even greater than mobile’s share of retail e-commerce sales (22%).

Ride-Hailing Apps Gaining on Rental Cars

Fewer than half of Millennials (48%) indicate that car rentals are their preferred in-destination transportation method, per comScore’s report, compared to 62% of Gen Xers and 69% of Boomers.

As expected, preference for ride-hailing apps is greater among the youngest demographic, 20% of whom say they’re the preferred transportation method.

In fact, Millennials say they’re more likely to prefer ride-hailing apps than taxis or town cars when in-destination.

The full report – which contains a host more data on the state of travel across several areas – can be downloaded here.

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