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A Guide to the Travel Customer Journey

The Travel Customer Journey is key for successful travel and tourism marketing. It helps you understand travelers of the past, present, and future.

The COVID-19 pandemic has heavily affected the travel and tourism industry back in 2020 and 2021. “Revenge Travel” was a new term coined to describe the predicted phenomenon of post-pandemic surges in travel bookings. After all, we’ve all been daydreaming about traveling while being stuck at home. Many will be dying to scratch that travel itch when things are safe again, which gradually started to happen in late 2021 onwards.

You might already have a laid-out Travel Customer Journey, but it’s time to spruce it up for this new, post-Covid era. Also, not to mention, technology has revolutionized the way people book for travel. Travel technology solutions are revolutionizing the way travelers experience their journeys, from booking accommodations to exploring new destinations.

For example, with VisaFly‘s expertise, your journey becomes smoother, ensuring you have the necessary visas and permits to explore the world hassle-free.

The travel landscape is now multi-device and multi-channel. Our blog is here to help!

Today, we’ll take a closer look at this journey and the stages within it. We’ll provide tips that can be easily implemented into your existing travel marketing strategy.

Here are the topics we’ll discuss:

What is a Customer Journey?

Awareness

Consideration

Conversion

What is a Traveler Customer Journey?

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Dreaming

Inspire People to Travel

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Planning

Engage with your Brand

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Booking

Drive Them to Book

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Exploring

Loyalty Though Experience

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Remembering

Post-Trip Touchpoints

1. Dreaming

Ah, yes, we all do this. We are daydreaming about sinking our toes into the warm sand on the beach in Fiji, exploring the historical ruins of Pompeii, or biking through the scenic city that is Amsterdam!

This craving for adventure has only multiplied since COVID-19 began, especially considering that people were so locked up inside (any even opted for doing treadmill workouts at home in order to cope with the situation at the time, since physically attending the gym was risky!)

Canceled travel plans are a pain. So! This is the first stage any person that is thinking of traveling will undergo.

A prospect will start by dreaming about a trip to your destination or participating in the tours or activities you offer. It’s hopeful and fun. Note, they don’t have any firm plans at this stage yet. Think of it like they are browsing for travel inspiration and pinning it on their Pinterest board.

As a marketer, this is where you think: how do I get more people to become aware of my location and offerings?

In order to appear in peoples’ “dreams”, brand awareness efforts are a must!

Travel marketers can run awareness campaigns through Display and Social ads. Use vibrant visuals that clearly depict your destination of offerings (this is not the time to be abstract). Paint a picture in their head before they know exactly what they want.

To build awareness, some ad formats work better than others:

When it comes to your advertising imagery:
  • Try to feature models that match the demographic you’re targeting. Family? Couples? Seniors? People want to put themselves in the models’ shoes.
  • Are you marketing the gorgeous views of your destination? Compared to the environment, the proportions of the models should be tiny to middle-sized. That is how you feature the destination as the focal point.
  • Want to show off the awesome activities you’re offering? Make sure the models are middle to large-sized compared to the background. This way, it demonstrates the experience effectively.
You need to plant the seed in their mind so they can think of you when they dream of their next vacation!

2. Planning

3. Booking

4. Exploring

5. Remembering

Some Travel Customer Journeys don’t include this extra stage, but we think it’s important to include it.

Sure, the traveler’s actual vacation has ended in the last stage, but that doesn’t mean their relationship with your brand is over!

This is the stage for customer retention.

Once a person has visited you, you should have their data and contact information.

Consider automating email marketing campaigns to keep them enticed. For example, a family visited your lodge for the summer. In the winter, you have a family package. Wouldn’t they be perfect to target?

On social media, collaborate with local businesses and host contest giveaways! Also, keep actively managing your social media accounts by posting new content

Because of Google’s removal of third-party cookies, it will be important for businesses to start collecting first-party data. With the collected first-party audience data, you should be segmenting them based on demographics and interests. Then, run retargeting campaigns geared towards different audiences to kickstart returning customers!

How to Track the Travel Customer Journey?

Why is it Important to Map out a Travel Customer Journey?

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