Mobile and Travel: From Looking to Booking


With more Americans connected on the go than ever before—more than two-thirds have smartphones and more than one-third have tablets (Nielsen)—it’s no surprise that Americans rely on devices for travel information and research.

Mobile has already changed the way consumers research and plan travel, and now mobile is poised to become a vital channel for transactions.

In 2011, mobile travel bookings made on smartphone and tablet represented just 2% of the U.S. online travel market. This year, in 2014, mobile travel bookings will account for 18% of the U.S. online travel market, and the figure will surge to over 25% in 2015!

Growth of U.S. Mobile Travel Bookings

Growth of U.S. Mobile Travel Bookings

To put things in perspective, let’s look at growth projections in terms of sales. Travel industry research authority Phocuswright projects U.S. mobile bookings to almost double in 2014—from $12.3 billion in 2013 to $24.3 billion in 2014.

In fact, the industry analysts predict that $1 out of every $12 of travel bookings will come from mobile devices (Travel Weekly).

If you want more hard proof that consumers are embracing mobile, not only to research travel but to book and buy, online travel company Orbitz Worldwide recently shared these highlights:

  • Mobile devices drove 27% of standalone hotel bookings for Orbitz Worldwide in Q3 2013.
  • Approximately 20% of Orbitz.com hotel bookings are same day, of which 60% were made on a mobile device during the same period.

Mobile has clearly transformed the customer journey and changed the way consumers interact and engage with travel brands. Which travel brands or apps are worthy of being your mobile travel companion?

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