How to reach Gen Z travellers in 2023

Gen Z Insights is your source for the latest Gen Z marketing trends and perspectives, presented by UNiDAYS.

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How to reach Gen Z travellers in 2023

    Download the report: Gen Z spending habits before and during COVID-19

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    When it comes to travel, Gen Zs crave high-end trips that feed their curiosity and love of adventure. All while being great value for money. 

    But how can your campaigns and offerings stand out in an ocean of travel promotion noise? You need intel on how to reach Gen Z students. So, you can deliver your messages for maximum effect. Attracting Gen Z's interest, fostering engagement and inspiring action.

    Build trust through word-of-mouth 

    Gen Z isn’t just taking travel recommendations from anyone. They want to hear from their tribe:

    • Most students (72%) consider recommendations from friends and family to be the most important factor in choosing a travel destination.

    Focus on creating lavish or adventurous travel experiences (at a great price) to drive organic word-of-mouth marketing among Gen Z students and their peers. Sparking positive mentions of your brand between friends and family. Also note that half of students choose a destination they previously enjoyed, highlighting the value of going to every length to ensure they have a great vacation the first time round. 

    Refer-a-friend schemes, like this one from Explore, will also draw in students heavily influenced by personal recommendations. And by incentivising students to refer their peers, travel brands can tap into the power of student networks and build trust and credibility with potential new customers.

    What’s more, by building a community for student travellers, you will foster a culture of sharing and recommendation. Empowering them to spread the word about your offerings to their fellow adventurers.

    Keep it real on social media 

    Authenticity is the most important value for Gen Z. And as digital natives, they’re more aware of how social media algorithms work as well as how brands use data to target them with ads. It’s perhaps why, in 2022, 47% of Gen Z adults said that they don’t trust social media platforms much or at all. 

    Yet, when it comes to their travel purchases, over half of students turn to social media for inspiration, underscoring the continued influence of platforms such as TikTok and Instagram. 

    Students aren't interested in postcard-perfect social media ads. They want the inside scoop on your travel experiences — to illustrate, Nielsen reported that 92% of consumers say they trust user-generated content (UGC), or “earned media”, over all other forms of advertising. Get students to share their related travel content using branded hashtags, contests or giveaways on social media. Appealing to Gen Z’s desire for authenticity. 

    Oh, and by the way … almost 1 in 3 Gen Zs unfollow or block brand social media accounts weekly. To weed out companies putting on a mask of empathy, while solely pursuing profit. Proving once again that being genuine pays off on social media

    When communicating directly with Gen Z, maintain transparency. For instance, be open to addressing any negative feedback in a respectful way, building trust and credibility to retain followers. 

    Collaborate with genuine, inspiring influencers

    A Morning Consult survey found that 52% of Gen Z respondents reported trusting the influencers they follow, even more than the celebrities they follow.

    Which travel influencers have caught their attention? Fanbytes ranks @TheRichAuntNY as a top travel influencer for Gen Z. She shares her solo travel experiences as a black woman with honesty and humour. There’s also @AlexOjeda who goes on “the world’s most EPIC adventures” and takes Gen Z along for the ride. Appealing to their love of unique and exciting excursions, as we reported

    Gen Zs follow influencers who keep it real and take them on thrilling trips abroad. It’s travellers like them, not celebrities showing off their private islands, who will capture trust and transfer it to your brand.  

    Front row seats to Gen Z 

    UNiDAYS is a student’s best friend. We connect them to their favourite brands and provide irresistible discounts that keep them hooked. Partner with us to access this booming market. And make your brand stand out with targeted messaging that hits the mark. 

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      Think digital marketing is all it takes to reach Gen Z? Think again. Download the research report here.