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Industry Review NO. 4 Marketing CoverWe are pleased to launch our latest research, which provides marketing insights across the five major sectors of the youth travel industry.

As the first report to examine worldwide marketing trends in the youth and student travel industry, the benchmark Youth and Student Travel Market Industry Review #4 – Marketing analyses insights across the language travel, higher education, work experience, volunteer travel and adventure travel sectors – and provides the first source of sector-to-sector comparisons.

Key findings of the report include:

  • Industry expansion: Youth and student travel organisations continue to expand significantly, with 31% having opened a new office in their home country in 2011 and 17% having established a branch office abroad.
  • Online transition: Online strategies are increasingly important with 70% of first contact with customers made remotely. A company’s website (89%) and social networks (72%) were cited as the most used online marketing tool.
  • Proactive trade marketing: Despite the online findings, most of the marketing budget is still allocated to traditional offline marketing tools, such as printed brochures (used by 72% of companies), student fairs (72% attend or exhibit) and workshops (80% attend at least one industry workshop every year).
  • Agency support: (ie: companies selling providers’ programmes) continue to be an important booking source for providers (ie: companies establishing youth and student travel programmes), with 52% of their total reservations generated by agencies and 63% of customers booking through an agency in person. An average student and youth travel provider works with 101 agencies.
  • Location and price remain key: These two factors are considered by both providers and agencies to be the most important (at 85% and 84% respectively) in terms of influencing student and youth travellers’ decisions about their final purchase across all five sectors. Personal recommendations (48%), easy access to visas (40%) and employment prospects (24%) are all less important.

Commenting on this research, David Chapman, WYSE Travel Confederation’s Director General, said: “At WYSE Travel Confederation we are committed to understanding the ever-changing characteristics, motivations, and needs of young travellers and the industry that supports them.

“Working with StudentMarketing once again, we have compiled the most detailed survey yet into marketing insights across five major sectors, from booking patterns and marketing tools to distribution opportunities and concerns for the industry’s future. This data will help our members to understand the industry as it stands today and adapt their strategies to support this rapidly growing market in the long-term.”

Youth and Student Travel Market Industry Review #4 is the fourth in a series of research reports we have launched which study trends across 769 youth travel businesses and 93 countries, which collectively represent one million youth and student travellers.

Free for members

Our members can access the full report free of charge, and non-members can purchase the full version from just €99,95.

If you would like to receive the full report or the executive summary, please email us at: