Youth travel has become one of the fastest growing segments of international tourism, representing more than 23% of the over one billion tourists travelling internationally each year*. This growth represents significant business opportunities for destinations as youth travellers stimulate local tourism businesses, engage in social interaction with host populations and seek to make a positive impact on the environment. *(Source: BETA UK)
Young people are recognised by the United Nations** as a major force for development and social change, have the potential to drive sustainable development in the tourism sector. The youth travellers of today and tomorrow are looking for many of the same authentic experiences as other 21st century visitors however, research suggests a fundamental change is required in the way we do business with them and engage with them, if we are to make the most of the opportunities the youth travel market presents. **(Source: WYSETC & UNWTO)
The youth travel market is growing and is set to dominate future travel. This business toolkit has been developed based on research findings (2017-2018), commissioned by Love Loch Lomond as part of the Collaborating for Success project, funded by Scottish Enterprise.
Interface, the Knowledge Connection for Business, matched Love Loch Lomond with expertise from Marketing Works at the University of Strathclyde, where two groups of international post-graduate marketing students worked on a research project over a period of 5 months. Read the full research findings here. These findings have been combined with other relevant industry statistics and current trends on youth travel.
As the toolkit is web-based, its format allows future updates and the addition of further information
The toolkit aims to build a profile of the youth traveller in relation to the Loch Lomond area, and offer tourism businesses insights into how to better understand what youth travellers are looking for in terms of travel experiences, products and services. Wider context on youth travel in Scotland and the UK is also provided.It is hoped that this will provide tourism businesses with a more detailed understanding of the youth travel segment, and help them adapt and enhance their products and services; in order to engage more effectively with youth travellers to the area.
Using the research findings, the toolkit also presents recommendations for business opportunities and how to make the most of them, with local examples to inspire, plus tips for how to create and develop authentic experiences and how to tap into current trends.
Each section contains further links to downloads, case studies, related resources and other business examples for inspiration.
The toolkit has been made possible through support from the Collaborating for Success Project, funded by Scottish Enterprise via the Destination Development Fund. Business Loch Lomond is part of the Collaborating for Success project from the industry-led Love Loch Lomond Destination Organisation including partners Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park and The Friends of Loch Lomond & The Trossachs.
Header image: Canva