Mobile travel bookings taking flight, APAC leads the way

  • 1,000 travel websites and 300mil bookings measured
  • Smartphones and tablets account for 21% of hotel bookings
Mobile travel bookings taking flight, APAC leads the way

MOBILE bookings for travel grew faster than desktop at 20% versus the latter’s 2% over the first six months of 2014, said digital performance advertising agency Criteo.
Asia Pacific led the way with more than 20% of travel bookings made on a mobile device, with Brazil and Germany at less than 10%, according to the company’s Travel Flash Report, which represents the activity of more than 1,000 travel websites worldwide in the first half of 2014.
The report provides insight on both the share and value of bookings generated from mobile devices for travel websites, including airlines, hotels, car rentals, cruises and apartments, and the impact this has on marketers’ advertising campaigns, Criteo said in a statement.
In the first half of 2014, the agency analysed 300 million bookings and over US$150 billion in booking value. Its data includes travel suppliers and online travel agencies across all travel categories, it added.

Mobile travel bookings taking flight, APAC leads the way

Among its findings:

  • Smartphones and tablets accounted for 21% of hotel bookings;
  • Peer-to-peer apartment rentals was the category with highest mobile penetration (34% globally);
  • The value of mobile bookings increased in every area except for accommodation. The average booking value was 21% higher for air travel and 13% higher for car rentals, but 30% lower for hotel bookings on mobile devices than desktop;
  • In-app bookings accounted for 12% of total mobile bookings;
  • The value of bookings by device varied across categories: there was an average US$600 more spent on packages booked on the iPad compared with those booked via any Android device. However, the value of Android bookings for flights outpaced all other mobile devices;
  • With a 42% increase, Latin America had the most significant seasonal growth in online bookings for travel advertisers. This coincided with the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil; and
  • Online travel agencies’ bookings climbed by 50% throughout the season in Europe and the United States, but the average value of those bookings fell by 19%. For hotel suppliers, however, the booking numbers remained stable throughout the first half of 2014, with peaks in value in February and June.

“Mobile is the driving force behind the exponential growth in online travel booking and sales, and that’s only set to continue in the second half of this year and beyond,” said Jason Morse, vice president of mobile products at Criteo.
“With smartphones and tablets in nearly every consumer’s hands today, travel marketers need to think strategically about developing a highly effective omni-channel marketing experience. That means ensuring the entire consumer experience – from the ads to shopping carts – is mobile optimised.
“Determining budgets across desktop and mobile must be completely fluid because consumers are making decisions in real-time, requiring that the booking experience be streamlined and integrated with mobile-friendly payment systems to ease the all-important path to purchase,” he added.
To download a copy of Criteo’s complete Travel Flash Report, click here.
Related Stories:
Huge shift to online bookings in APAC travel industry
On mobile, Criteo gets personal with permission
Mobile delivering higher CTRs than PCs: Criteo report
Asians prefer online booking for travel accommodations
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