January 17, 2014 at 2:31 pm #666
My views on this would be for DMOs and accommodation providers not becoming complacent. By large, the staycation has come about due to the state of the economy, with less being able to afford holidays abroad. However, over time the economy will improve, and whilst budget airlines are not quite as cost-friendly as they advertise, there are always incentives for people to hop on a plane at the promise of some warm weather.
We have seen a boost in tourism and it is important that now we have these visitors that we hold onto them. As a destination and as an accommodation provider we need to look at ways of keeping these people coming back, not just by way of attractive pricing, but keeping on top of tourism trends and offering where we can what the consumer is looking for. This may be cycling breaks, for example, with cycling being a predicted trend for this year. Take time to research cycling routes in your area, good places to stop off for lunch and take a break for example. Maybe even contact that stop off, albeit a pub or a cafe, and see if they could offer some incentive.
Make the most of events, not just in your immediate area, but look at surrounding areas too. If you are within easy reach of a city, publicise their events – rural accommodation and accommodation out of town often has a more attractive price tag and a weekend break with breakfast could be sold for the same cost as a one night room only stay in the city.
Keep in touch with your customers, offer them loyalty incentives to return, even if out of season. Focus on positives – we are a great nation for moaning about the weather yet may of us will wrap up and get out if we know there is something worth seeing or doing, and there is a warm fire, a hot chocolate and a home made piece of cake to return to!
These are just a few of many of the suggestions I talk about with my clients.
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