“Millennials, also known as Generation Y, are now the nation’s largest living adult generation surpassing Baby Boomers,” according to the U.S. Bureau. As the economy re-opens during COVID-19 pandemic, Millennials, ages 24 to 39, will play an influential role on the road to recovery for the travel, food and beverage industries.
It is no secret that the corona virus has taken its toll on Millennials and other demographic groups as it pertains to employment -- furloughs, layoffs and reduced work hours – forcing them to become frugal spenders during these critical times. Despite this fact, Millennials have been leading the way as it pertains certain trends -- contactless payment and online shopping.
Allen Marketing Communications, a boutique travel and lifestyle public relations agency based in New York City, shares insights about key travel, food and beverage trends with Millennials during this epidemic.
Post COVID-19 Travel
Millennials, along with Generation Z, will play a pivotal role on the road to recovery for the travel industry. Although American travelers are temporarily restricted from entering many countries around the world, research reveals that “Millennials consistently answered that they will be more willing to travel sooner than Gen X and Baby Boomers and are less risk-adverse.” (Source: Fuel COVID-19 Consumer Sentiment Study)
If the price is right, then people will buy. During these tough economic times, it is important to have limited time offers and amazing travel deals will inspire Millennials to venture on a socially distanced adventure.
Instagram will continue to serve as “Insta Passport.” Stunning images will play an important role in helping Generation Y to escape for hiking, camping and glamping at a national park or other areas of natural beauty.
Savvy marketers should note that “for distances of driving up to two hours, 66 percent of consumers will be ready to travel within three months of restrictions being lifted, while 36 percent would be willing to travel within one month vs, 31 percent in the one-to-three month window. Staying local and driving up to six hours was just under 50 percent within three months and flying comprised just 22 percent. Those in the greater than $100K bracket would be willing to fly within 12 months at 69 percent vs. 53 percent for the less than $50K and 59 percent for $50K to $100K group.” (Source: Fuel COVID-19 Consumer Sentiment Study)
Food and Beverage
Over the last couple of months, health officials have encouraged consumers across the country to incorporate immune boosting foods into our daily diets. Research reveals Millennials have embraced healthier eating habits during this epidemic.
During the lockdown, Generation Y have been perfecting their culinary and baking skills often experimenting with meatless and vegan-inspired recipes. Others have supported local restaurants by ordering take out items – plant-based alternatives, healthy bowls, and whole grains to boost their immunity.
As restaurants re-open and move from 25 to 50 percent capacity, this group of savvy food lovers are creating signature one of a kind meals by mixing and matching different flavors and food items on the menu. A National Restaurant Association report found that “58 percent of millennials were more likely to choose one restaurant over another based on its ability to provide sustainably grown, raised and manufactured foods. 30 percent of millennials eat foods that are certified as organic.”
Although liquor sales have exploded with the corona virus, younger Millennials have stayed sober for the most part to maintain a healthy immune system. Mocktails and zero-proof beverages have done extremely well with this group of savvy consumers.
Social media will also play a key role in inspire the discerning Generation Y food lover to dine at your establishment or try a new beverage.
Although COVID-19 pandemic has forced Millennials and other generations to make many changes in their daily routines, it is worth noting these trends to reach the largest demographic group, stay relevant, top of mind and inspire sales for your brand.
Our travel and lifestyle public relations professionals are here to help. Give us a call.
By Joanna Allen, chief executive officer, Allen Marketing Communications, Inc.