Generation Z or Gen Z, refers to the group of people who were born between the late 1990s and early 2010s. A diverse demographic who grew up in a rapidly changing world, shaped by technology, social media, and a growing awareness of social issues.
They are also known for being more tech-savvy, socially conscious and having unique preferences when it comes to travel and hospitality experiences.
As a Gen Zer myself, I can relate to the fact that most of us prefer travel experiences that are unique, cost-effective, socially responsible, and seamlessly integrated with our digital lifestyles.
Sounds like a tough deal to crack? No, worries. This blog is for you. I’ll be sharing some of the best tips you can implement to create the perfect stay for Gen Z travellers.
Travel Preferences of Gen Z
When it comes to travelling and accommodation, Gen Zers have different priorities and preferences compared to previous generations. They value authenticity and seek out experiences that are unique and memorable. During their stay, they prefer a budget-friendly and well-reviewed hotel, enjoy outdoor activities on recommendations such as hiking, local food, traditions and most importantly, internet accessibility.
Doesn’t that seem too complicated? Lucky for you, I’m here to help!
9 Tips for Hotels to Create the Perfect Stay for Gen Z Travellers
1. Strong Online Presence
As digital natives, the younger generation heavily relies on the internet to research and book their travel accommodations. For attracting Gen Zers to your hotel, having a strong online presence is a necessity. Having a website, social media presence, and listings on travel sites increases the visibility of your hotel and its reputation.
Hotels that have a strong online presence and engage with searchers through social media platforms, websites, and travel blogs, will be more likely to capture their attention and interest Gen Z travellers. Also, you can showcase unique offerings and experiences, including eco-friendly initiatives, local culture and other amenities, that appeal to the preferences of Gen Z travellers.
Gone are the traditional methods to book a stay. As I told you earlier, Gen Zs are digital natives. They are more likely to trust online reviews and social media recommendations from other travellers than traditional advertising. More than 95% of Gen Zers look for online reviews before booking a stay, so make sure to have ratings and reviews on websites, social media and other business listing platforms.
And trust me, don’t ever underestimate the power of online reviews as it does impact the decision-making of searchers. Obviously, anyone would like to book a hotel or visit a restaurant that has positive online reviews and ratings from experienced guests.
3. Technology-aided Property
Being grown up with technology, most of us are accustomed to having access to every piece of information at our fingertips. We can’t deny the fact that most of us are used to internet in our daily lives. Especially, while travelling we need to communicate, gather information, search for local attractions and stay productive if necessary. Just imagine, you have to spend a day in an unknown place without internet connectivity! Let’s be real, it’s tough.
Also, Gen Zers are more likely to use their smartphones and other devices for every other work. Therefore, hotels that provide reliable and fast WiFi and modern technology amenities such as smart keys, and receive online orders and payments are more likely to appeal to Gen Z travellers.
A young generation like Gen Z mostly prefers to be productive every day, they are opposed to being tied to a set schedule or location for working. They value work-life balance and flexibility. With the rise of remote working opportunities, more people are choosing to work and travel at the same time. Digital nomads are attracted to the flexibility of being able to work from anywhere, while also experiencing new cultures.
What hotels can do is ensure reliable and high-speed internet connectivity throughout the property, and provide comfortable and dedicated workspaces within the hotel. Additionally, hotels can promote their amenities, such as fitness centres, pools, spas, and outdoor spaces as a way for guests to relax and recharge after work like a cherry on top.
5. Brand-building on Social Media
Gen Z is the first generation to have grown up entirely in the digital age, so they are highly connected and influenced by social media. They tend to use it as a primary source of information and inspiration for travel. They rely on it for communication, information, entertainment, and even making travel decisions. So overall, what hotels need to have is a strong presence and engagement on social media to reach and attract this influential generation of travellers.
Wouldn’t you agree – we all love to share our experiences on social media! As a hotel owner, you can create some picture-perfect corners in your property that they’ll want to share with friends and followers.
As a marketer, no one would disagree that storytelling is one of the most powerful marketing techniques as well as an emotional way to connect with your audience. And yes, it works for Gen Zs too. Most of us are used to consuming content in a variety of formats. Storytelling can be presented in different forms, including videos, social media, and interactive experiences, making it more engaging and memorable.
We are more attentive towards anything that’s visually appealing. So, expressing your brand’s story through a video and sharing it on social media will always be a plus.
For example, you can create a video tour that showcases the hotel’s history, stunning architecture, elegant decor, modern amenities, and traditional attractions highlighting the hotel’s unique features.
7. Flexible Timings and Cost-effective Meals
Gen Z travellers often have busy schedules and different lifestyles, which may require early or late breakfast times due to their travel schedules or differences in time zones. Hence, traditional meal hours may not be comfortable for them.
They might prefer cost-effective meal options that offer local cuisine or cultural trends. By offering flexible meal options, hotels can provide a more personalized and convenient experience for their guests to create a positive impression.
For example, offering all-day meal options can encourage guests to spend more time at the hotel, and order food & drinks from the hotel restaurant only. This will not only increase your revenue but also lead to higher satisfaction rates among guests enhancing your reputation.
8. Customized Recommendations
Just imagine, you went on a trip to South Korea, spend a week there and still, you didn’t try world-famous Korean ramen or didn’t buy any K-skincare products. If it was me, I’d be feeling massively disappointed. So, when a guest is at your property, you should recommend local places, events or food to them as it can enhance the guest experience and build trust.
Gen Z travellers are known for valuing unique and authentic experiences that reflect the culture and cuisine. So, when you recommend such places or events to your guests, it shows that you genuinely care about their preferences and interests. This does create a positive impression and encourages them to share their experience with others.
Moreover, recommending customized places or food can also help to increase revenue for hotels.
Meaning, you can partner with local restaurants or tour agencies to offer exclusive discounts to your guests.
9. Sustainability and Social Responsibility
Social responsibility and sustainability seem too heavy words for this young generation to handle, right?
But, it’s not. They do care about the environment and the future. In fact, sometimes more than the older generations.
May it be through social media, schools or the internet, they are aware of it and surveys have found that Gen Zers list global warming, and climate change as one of their top concerns. They are environmentally conscious and prioritize sustainable travel options, prefer eco-friendly hospitality and other green tourism initiatives. Additionally, you can also consider supporting local charities that are important to the community.
Overall, the hospitality industry must evolve to attract Generation Z because this demographic is rapidly becoming one of the largest consumer groups in the world.
It is important to understand the preferences of Gen Z if you want to remain competitive and attract such travellers.
From creating unique experiences to utilizing social media, there are many opportunities to attract this generation and build lasting relationships.
By embracing the preferences of Gen Z and adapting your marketing strategies accordingly, you can create a memorable experience for your guests and build a loyal customer base for your hotel.