Luxury Travel Trends Shift As Millennials Act on Their Aspirations

Many millennials today are entering their peak earning years and gaining more affluence at unprecedented rates. This new generation is changing the face of affluence forever. According to our latest research from FutureCast, nearly one quarter of U.S. adults making an annual household income of more than $500,000 are millennials. This means that brands looking to make a splash within the millennial audience need to stop thinking of this generation as college students playing beer pong in the basement and instead recognize the significant spending power that this group wields -- especially in the luxury travel industry.

Millennials are a generation that is completely redefining what adventure means and are looking at the world through a more global perspective. According to the United Nations, 200,000 million millennial tourists generate more than $180 billion in annual tourism revenue, an increase of nearly 30% since 2007.

For brands in the travel industry this is great news. What is even better is that millennials agree that traveling and seeing the world is an intricate part of their lives with 78% of them choosing to splurge on experiences over “things.” They are also 23% more interested in going abroad than older generations and make up 20% of all international tourists. As affluent millennials begin reshaping what the travel industry looks like today, I sat down with Cathy Ross, CEO of Exclusive Resorts to get her take on current industry trends.

Jen Coy