India Consumer Travel Report

India Consumer Travel Report Published May 2012 Analysts: Marcello Gasdia, David Juman, Douglas Quinby


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India has undergone tremendous change in the past several decades. Economic reforms and growth have created a burgeoning middle class characterized by increasing affluence, an improved level of education and a desire to travel. At the same time, advances in technology and the Internet spurred a variety of new travel options, online travel tools and services. Tech-savvy consumers have been eager to tap into these alternatives and efficiencies, and now leverage the Internet and (more recently) their smartphones to plan, book and share their travel experiences.

Phocuswright's India Consumer Travel Report provides a complete picture of the new Indian traveler: who are they, how they travel, how they shop, and what they want. This report examines the Indian traveler population, including their demographic profile, travel and spend behavior, and a range of travel-related activities in which they participate. This study dives deeply into how Indian travelers select their destinations; plan, shop and purchase their travel; and use social media and the mobile channel for travel.

Based on data collected from approximately 2,500 Indian travelers across 12 major metropolitan areas, Phocuswright's India Consumer Travel Report includes:Demographic analysis of Indian travelers, including age, gender, income and education levelGeneral traveler behavior: trip frequency and duration, travel party composition, incidence of domestic versus international travel, and future travel intentionsPurchase incidence and spend on a range of travel components, including air, hotel, rail, bus, vacation packages, destination activities and moreOnline versus offline travel planning, and number of websites used in each phase – destination selection, shopping, purchasing and sharingTrip motivation and information sources used in destination selection, along with leading domestic and international destinationsTraveler shopping behavior, including types of websites used, online and offline sources of information, and influence of various types of online contentTravel purchasing channels, online versus offline booking, and typical purchase methods by age, location and travel componentTrends in mobile and social media adoption, including how consumers use these platforms for travel-related activitiesPhocuswright's India Consumer Travel Report provides a range of data and analysis that help travel companies understand the behavior, attitudes and preferences of today's upwardly mobile, tech-savvy Indian travelers.

Purchase now to learn more about this dynamic new breed of travelers.

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ALSO AVAILABLEMay 30 Webinar – Upward and Onward: Phocuswright's Indian Consumer TravelIndia Online Travel Overview Fifth Edition: When Fast is Not Fast EnoughaReport Package (Save 15% when you purchase this report and the Indian Online Travel Overview report together)

  • Overview, Methodology and Research Highlights
    • Overview
    • Methodology
    • Research Highlights
      • Indian Travelers: A Small but Growing Slice of a Big Pie
      • Indian Travelers Take Fewer but Longer Trips
      • Travel Companies Must Adapt Strategies to India’s Diverse Population and Profound Regional Differences in Traveler Behavior
      • Let’s Hit the Road – Travelers Have Lots of Future Plans
      • Travelers Take to the Skies
      • The Enormous Rise in Independent Travel Reflects the Profound Demographic Shifts Underway in India
      • More Economic Clout Drives More Discretionary Travel
      • Indian Hotel Guests are Moving Upmarket
      • Indian Travelers are Multichannel Planners,
      • Shoppers and Bookers
      • OTAs’ Consumer Reach Far Exceeds Supplier Websites’
      • Brands and Trust – Not Price – Matter Most to Online Shoppers
      • Online Bookers Represent Almost Half the Traveler Pool
      • Mobile Phone Adoption Complete,
      • Smartphone Adoption Underway
      • Social Networks Play a Major Role in Travel Decision-Making
  • Who Is the Indian Traveler?
  • General Travel Behavior
    • Trip Frequency and Duration
    • Travel Party Composition
  • Components
  • The Travel Planning Process
  • The Destination Selection Phase
  • The Shopping Phase
  • The Purchase Phase
  • Mobile and Social
  • Sponsors

Phocuswright's India Consumer Travel Report incorporates several consumer research elements, including both quantitative and qualitative components. The quantitative research phase consisted of telephone and in-person interviews fielded through I-connect Research in 4Q11, which targeted members of the Indian population that travels for leisure. (Note: These respondents will sometimes be referred to as "upper urban class.") Based on data from the Government Census of India and I-connect Research, Phocuswright projects the number of upper urban class Indian adults to be 61 million - 5% of the total Indian population (Figure 1).

To qualify for participation in the study, respondents had to indicate they had taken at least one overnight leisure trip at least 120 kilometers (km) from home in the past 12 months that included either paid lodging and/or air, AC (airconditioned) rail or AC bus travel. An additional screener required consumers to have played an active role in planning their leisure trips. This report identifies the qualifying population as "Indian travelers." We received 2,500 qualified responses representing 12 major metropolitan areas (see Figure 2). The respondent pool can be projected with confidence as representing the upper urban class traveler population. The error interval for analysis is +/-2% at a 95% confidence level.

Phocuswright employed a quota during data collection to capture an adequate sample of domestic and international air travelers for analysis. With the quota, the incidence of domestic and international air travel is 55% and 25%, respectively. Phocuswright weighted the results to reflect the natural incidence that would have occurred had the quota not been implemented (42.2% domestic air travel and 12.8% international air travel).

For the qualitative research phase, six focus group sessions were conducted in Kolkata, Delhi, Chennai, Mumbai and Bangalore with domestic and international travelers. Focus group respondents are between the ages of 28 and 45, have an annual household income greater than ?500,000 ($10,000), possess at least one credit card, and use the Internet daily. (Meeting these criteria qualified respondents as "upper urban class.") Domestic travelers must have traveled to at least two Indian destinations more than 120 km from their hometowns and paid for lodging within the past 12 months. International travelers must have visited one international destination and paid for lodging in the past two years. This report uses the Indian currency, the rupee (?), as the base currency, and also provides approximate U.S. dollar equivalents based on the average annual exchange rate for 2011 (0.0213 rupees per US$1).

"Lakh" is a numerical term widely used in India that means 100,000. So, for example, ?5 lakhs equals 500,000 Indian rupees.

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