Unwrapped Webinar: Navigating Guest Experience for the New Travel Personas Emerging from COVID-19
Despite the challenges presented by coronavirus, there’s plenty to look forward to as travel recovers. In Guesty’s latest webinar, our own Shelbi Lifshitz was joined by Callum Hale-Thomson, VP of Business Development at Unwrapped, to discuss strategies for hosting the new types of travelers emerging from the coronavirus era.
Callum gave insight into the trends we’re seeing as travel slowly recovers in China, namely that tourists will primarily seek out destinations close to home and that they will be particularly invested in experiences, including restaurants and entertainment.
The New Travel Personas
Callum went on to share that once travel picks up again, there are three types of tourists we’re likely to see, each with a distinct set of preferences.
The Staycationer: This type of traveler is keen to explore but still wary of traveling too far. Staying in their own cities or close by, they’ll be most interested in luxurious listings, local hidden gems and health and wellness activities.
The Escapist: These city dwellers are eager to take off to a new location after lockdown. They’ll be unfamiliar with the area and will need easy access to local amenities.
The Opportunist: Like most experienced travelers, the Opportunist seeks to take advantage of emerging deals and cheap accommodations. Callum pointed out that these travelers are mostly younger, and they are already booking trips into early 2021.
Creating Better Experiences for Your Guests
As travel makes a comeback, tourists will be more eager than ever to receive trusted recommendations. The more you’re able to curate the best local partners, deliver recommendations in a personalized and mobile-first way and get the timing just right, the more you’ll be able to increase wallet share, keep guests satisfied and inspire repeat bookings.
As always, we invited those tuning in to contribute questions throughout the webinar, which we then addressed in a Q&A session following the presentation. Here are some highlights (edited for clarity):
Q: Who creates the content within Unwrapped?
Callum: We handle all of the content that’s fed into the guides. The guides are effectively live guides to local areas, so if a new place opens up or shuts down, we make sure that it’s updated in real-time.
Q: Does Unwrapped find that guests with curated stays are more likely to return for future bookings?
Callum: Absolutely. This situation is really relevant for property managers, particularly those with a large number of units who operate in different markets. But it can apply to others as well.
Because we are able to offer the full brand customization and tie it so directly to the in-stay experience, travelers really associate their experience with their provider. For those reasons they are much more likely to seek out that host or company in the future.
Q: How does Guesty think guest communication is changing due to COVID-19?
Shelbi: Communication with guests will now be more crucial than ever. Leveraging automated messages to make guests aware of new procedures and reassuring them of your availability will be really important to make them feel comfortable.