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And Australia’s new favourite travel agent is…Booking.com!

March 28, 2017 OTA News No Comments Email Email

Nobody could accuse the tourism industry of being uneventful, and the latest data from the Roy Morgan Holiday Tracker survey reveals there have been some striking developments in the travel agents most popular with holidaying Aussies—starting with the stratospheric rise of online-only operator, Booking.com.

In an average 12-month period, 13.5 million Australians aged 14+ (68.3% of the population) take at least one holiday, according to research conducted by Roy Morgan in 2016. Booking.com was the most widely used travel agent, with 9.3% of the population (just over 1.8 million holiday-goers) using it at least once. Second-most popular was Flight Centre (9.0%), while relative newcomer Airbnb (4.8%) took third position.

This is the first time for many years that an agent other than Flight Centre has occupied top spot, and shows how much has changed since Roy Morgan’s last travel agent findings (for June 2015) were released. Back then, Flight Centre was the most popular agent (9.4%), well ahead of Booking.com (5.8%) and Wotif.com (5.2%). Airbnb did not yet feature in the Top 15.

Top 15 travel agents used by Australians at least once for holiday, last 12 months

Source: Roy Morgan Single Source (Australia), January-December 2016, n=14,330. NB: Airbnb measured since July 2015; Trivago measured since July 2016.

Another recent entrant to the market, Trivago, is also making its presence felt in seventh position (used by 2.5% of Aussies at least once in the previous 12 months). Other travel agents whose popularity has grown in the last 18 months include Expedia.com.au (3.7%, up from 3.2%), Hotels.com (2.4%, up from 2.1%) and Helloworld (2.1%, up from 1.3%).

Flight Centre still flying highest for consideration

Although the proportion of Aussies who used Flight Centre for a holiday in the last 12 months has slipped slightly, it maintains a healthy lead as the travel agent more Australians would consider using next time they take a holiday (23.4%, virtually unchanged from 23.6%).

Consideration for Booking.com has shot up from 10.0% to 13.6%. Wotif.com hasn’t fared as well, dropping from second-most considered travel agent (10.9%) as of June 2015 to sixth (10.3%) in 2016. Not surprisingly, Airbnb (10.7%) and Trivago (10.4%) are also shaking things up in the consideration stakes, debuting in the Top Five for 2016.

Top 15 travel agents Australians would consider using for next holiday

Source: Roy Morgan Single Source (Australia), January-December 2016, n=14,330.

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