Recognizing the importance of ‘travel’ as a possible target market, I looked deeper into the motivations of LGBT when making decisions.
When choosing a holiday destination, what are your most important considerations?” (multiple answers possible)
I split the considerations into two parts:
A. those that are LGBT related, and
B. general ones.
In this segment the ratings of the straight population was not very relevant, so I only looked at the answers of the LGBT. When the “important” and “very important” categories add up, highest ranking are Established tolerance (69%), perceived safety for LGBT (63%), the presence of an LGBT community, bars, clubs (48%), LGBT friendly advertising (42%)* and the presence of an LGBT neighborhood (39%).
* this is very relevant, as this is an area where a huge number of advertisers have dabbled in. If you advertise your destination as “gay friendly”, it may become a self-fulfilling prophecy!
Of less importance were Pride events (23%), gay film festivals (13%), circuit parties** (11%) and gay sports events (10%).
** Circuit parties were listed as a negative consideration by 21%, the only one of the 9 elements where this negative rating is at all higher than 10%.
Conclusion: tolerance and safety rank very high in the evoked set of considerations. An established community (nightlife, neighborhood) is of importance too. Finally, when a destination has engaged in LGBT advertising, it attracts visitors.
In this section we can see the differences between the two groups. In three categories (Culture, Recommendations by others and Nature), the priorities are almost the same (resp. 79%, 65% and 61% in the gay group, compared to 73%, 64% and 68% in the straight group).
For Cuisine, straights seem to have a stronger preference (72% as opposed to 64%). Language spoken is slightly less important for gays (29% - 33%), as is Costs to get there*** (71% - 81%).
*** this is an important outcome, as it means that gays are willing to spend more to get somewhere, so more destinations come within reach.
Pet friendly and Child friendly are less important for gays (resp. 16% and 10%, as opposed to 21% and 19%) – while both aspects score high percentages as a negative factor (resp. 19% and 37%, compared to 13% and 45% for straights). Gays also seem to care less about the Travel time (45% - 58%)****.
**** again, this indicates that gays are willing to literally go the extra mile!
Conclusion: gays seem to be willing to travel further to get to their destination of choice, and the costs involved are of less importance than is the case for heteros. Important aspects are culture, history, recommendations by others, nature and previous personal experience – but these factors are not very much different from those of their straight peers. Remarkable is that for both groups, the “child friendliness” is a predominant negative factor , while pet friendly is considered as somewhat negative too.