The Money Shot: Instagram-Led Holiday Destinations

With the recent rise of travel influencers and the #travelblogger hashtag, it appears that social media is not only inspiring us but also informing users about their travel destination of choice.

The youth of today, in fact, seem to be ditching the traditional club 18-30 holidays in favour of more ‘Instagrammable’ locations. Forget going down the strip in Magaluf, it’s all about getting the perfect selfie at Coachella.

A recent survey of British holidaymakers found that ‘Instagram-ability’ is the number one priority for millennials when booking a holiday. Over 60% 18-24 year old’s are ditching the Sambuca shots for a shot on the ‘gram, and 78% of those aged 25 to 34 are seeking to spur social media envy with their posts.

But they’re not just #travelbrags – Instagram is genuinely changing the way in which we search for destinations and book holidays.

In a report by WeSwap, 37% of millennials have had their holiday destination influenced by social media and 34% have actually booked a holiday because of content seen on social media.

This comes with the decline of traditional youth holidays. Earlier this month, Thomas Cook announced that it is retiring its infamous Club 18–30. The final Club 18-30 package holiday departed from Manchester on 27th October, landing in Magaluf in Mallorca.

In addition to this, EasyJet is also now launching an Instagram booking service called ‘Look&Book’. This tool closes the gap between simply ‘liking’ a photo and actually transporting the user to the destination, allowing potential holidaymakers to book instantly from an Instagram picture. Users can take a screengrab of a beach, town or location and simply upload this to the app – where the image recognition technology will allow users to seamlessly plan their holiday.

This highlights that we are now seeking inspiration from non-traditional sources, driving the Instagram travel trend.

According to Forbes, this shouldn’t come as much of a surprise, after all, the millennial generation is known for trusting peers more so than brands or celebrity endorsements.

Travel marketing isn’t only about promoting practical aspects of a destination – hotel price comparisons or ease of airport transfer – but about inspiring would-be travellers with visual content.

The world is full of incredible places with billions of incredible photo opportunities. Marketers should be tapping into these opportunities, posting content at “dreaming” moments to inspire consumers through to booking and beyond.

And with half of UK web users suggesting they have made a purchase through social media, a similar approach could easily be taken across other categories; from furniture to meal prep, anything ‘Instagrammable’ goes.

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