How is the source market Romania developing for a travel destination like Austria? Nine o`clock talked to Oana Pop – Marketing&PR Manager at the Austrian National Tourist Office – about the Romanian target group, consumer behaviour in the digital era, as well as what the future holds for the tourism industry.
Nine o`clock: “In the previous year, Austria registered about a million overnights from Romania, a growth of +6.6% for the winter season 2018/19. How is this trend likely to evolve?”
The Romanian travel market has grown immensely over the past ten years, not only for the destination Austria, but in general. Our figures for the winter season are constantly growing and Austria continues to be the first winter destination Romanians choose for their holidays. In 2018 for example Austria was chosen for 47% of all winter holidays made by Romanians. However, summer is the season with the greatest potential, because Romanians mainly are summer travellers. Austria is still not really considered a summer destination by the Romanians, but we are building up awareness around cycling and holidays at the Alpine lakes as an alternative to the classic sun and beach destinations. The future relies on a more subtle communication strategy towards the target groups which promises authentic experiences, custom tailored to their needs and desires.
Nine o`clock: “What does the Romanian traveller to Austria look like?“
In the European comparison the Romanian traveller to Austria is the youngest. At an average age of 36 years they are millennials and sometimes even post-millennials. Well-educated and well-travelled they work in multinational corporation or are entrepreneurs. They perceive themselves as Europeans, are financially stable and most of the time speak several foreign languages. Fond of traveling, digitally savvy they spend above the average European in their holidays and see their holidays as an investment in their experiences. In our communication strategy we have defined a number of target groups, each one of them unique in its own way: from families to solo travellers, we believe they share a set of common values, not only financial attributes.
Nine o`clock: “What do Romanians enjoy most in their holidays in Austria?”
During winter season, some of the Romanians choose hotels located near the valley station of the cable car, so that they can easily access the slopes, a major convenience especially for families. On the other hand, there are some, especially the ones driving to Austria in their personal vehicles (almost 60% of the target group) who are very mobile and choose their accommodation more flexibly according to their budgets. In the evening, they love the après-ski bars and their casual, fun atmosphere. During the day families appreciate the thermal waters and spas as an add-on to their skiing day. In the cities Christmas Markets are considered the main attraction during winter season, but also cultural experiences and entertainment activities with children are very appreciated: zoos, water parks and museums are also popular during summer. Thanks to better flight connections short city breaks have become more popular than ever. Cycling has also been booming in recent years and many of the Romanians choose child friendly biking routes along the Danube, for example.
Nine o`clock: “How does booking a holiday in the digital era look like, and what is the Romanians’ preference in this regard? “
The motto for online booking in 2019 should be “go mobile or go home”. According to the biggest online travel agency in Romania 2019 will be the first year when the mobile bookings will exceed the desktop reservations, so mobile traffic has increased significantly. Many of them book online directly, and in either case they increasingly expect to receive live online assistance, as well as immediate answers regarding their booking process. In addition, one can observe an increased awareness about consumer’s rights, as well as the demand for impeccable customer care and seamless communication. Things like chatbots, requests through social media, WhatsApp groups and last-minute booking have never been so popular and accessible. According to google terms like ‘today’ or ‘tonight’ have been searched 150% more in the past two years. All of this is developing rapidly in all industries and the travel industry must cope with these changes as well. I believe the Austrian travel industry has the chance to score on the Romanian market thanks to its complex travel products, which are the premise for tailor-made offers. The complex needs of the travel personas are in the centre of our communication and being able to meet them, means a great deal in this ever-evolving digital environment.
Get in touch with us here:
www.austria.info / b2b.austria.info
Facebook: Vacante in Austria
The ANTO team at their summer event – Austrian Tasting Table – with the food influencer, Cristina Mazilu.