Special Projects Member for the Moment or Loyal for Life? Loyalty Programs Revisited.

Member for the Moment or Loyal for Life? Loyalty Programs Revisited.

A Phocuswright Special Project

Member for the Moment or Loyal for Life? Loyalty Programs Revisited.

U.S. travel companies are spending millions of dollars developing and implementing loyalty programs. Driving bookings, retention and repeat business are among the main goals of travel loyalty programs. However, U.S. leisure travelers, on average, take just three leisure trips a year and don't always book flights or paid accommodation for every trip. Even with these low travel averages, travel companies have placed great emphasis on attracting consumers to their loyalty programs, hoping to strengthen relationships with existing customers and establish long-lasting bonds with new customers. But have they worked?

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Phocuswright research analyst Mark Blutstein presents key findings about U.S. consumer loyalty.
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Is it possible to build true loyalty in travel?

The foundation of this project will be a consumer survey targeting U.S. travelers who are members of hotel, airline or OTA loyalty programs. By focusing on travelers who use and value the perks of loyalty programs, the study will reveal what motivates them to join, how they view their membership and benefits, and their broader relationship with and attitudes toward the brand. The project also explores how much loyalty will matter in a post COVID-19 travel environment, and if and how loyalty programs will impact post COVID-19 travel behavior. 

Loyalty is complex and consumer behavior differs from market to market. Beyond loyalty program trends, the study will examine elements that contribute to a sense of loyalty and how loyalty stacks up against other factors in decisions.

The study will also explore how attitudes may shift in a post COVID-19 era.

Sponsor this Upcoming Research to Learn

  • Who travel loyalty members are and how many are there in the U.S.
  • What loyalty means to travelers and what makes them more loyal to a brand
  • Why U.S. travelers join loyalty programs and why don’t they don’t
  • How consumers engage with and prioritize loyalty programs (e.g., shopping, booking, points redemption strategies)
  • If loyalty membership = brand loyalty
  • The influence of loyalty programs on travel decisions
  • How much loyalty will matter in a post COVID-19 travel environment
  • The value of credit card programs to travelers and how have they impact the importance of traditional travel loyalty programs 
  • How corporate travel policy shapes program choice and usage 

Special Project Core Areas of Focus

  • Customer retention through loyalty programs
  • What being part of a loyalty program really means to the customer
  • Contributing factors to the emotional and relationship driven aspect of loyalty
  • If and how loyalty programs may have an impact on post COVID-19 travel behavior

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