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Business

Transformative Experiences

Travel that epitomises well-being, personal fulfillment and spontaneity. Renu Basu, senior vice president — global sales and marketing, IHCL, explains how Taj Hotels is checking all the boxes when it comes to meeting the needs of travellers today

June 2019     |     276 words     |     1-minute read

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The Indian Hotels Company Limited (IHCL) is located in 12+ countries in over 100+ locations, with over 380 restaurants and hotel capacity of over 21,500 rooms.

Renu Basu, senior vice president — global sales and marketing, IHCL, shares how consumer tastes are evolving in the hospitality business.

What are the top consumer trends in your industry?

Technology, the game changer: The modern consumer has a trifecta of expectations: a frictionless user experience, the ability to personalise with great content that inspires and technology that helps bridge the gap. 

Renu Basu, senior vice president — global sales and marketing, IHCL

Last-minute deals: The spur-of-the-moment generation books vacations at the last minute to fuel excitement of not knowing where to go until the very last moment.

Wellness tourism: Travellers are increasingly looking for ‘well-being’ options. Food menus, healthy options and yoga-centred holidays are growing in popularity.

Transformative travel: This is the new experiential travel in which travellers are seeking a deeper personal fulfilment.

The consumer trend of FY2019-20?

Business or leisure, travel will continue to be more customised and experiential. 

Are the trends in your sector age- or gender-specific?

The millennials — who are confident, independent, affluent and adventurous — are willing to spend on aspirational products and services. Propelled by social media, they are inclined towards exploring and self-focused travel. Then come the ‘silvers’ (senior citizens), comprising one of the fastest growing segment for long-haul, outbound travel and group travel.

Is there a significant shift in the spend of any consumer segment?

Generation X looks at taking frequent short breaks and one long break, usually overseas, coinciding with their children’s holidays; for the millennials, technology and accessibility has opened doors to off-beat destinations and experiences.

Are there differences in spending habits in Tier-2/Tier-3 cities compared to metros?

Aspirations of consumers in tier-2/tier-3 cities are the same; metro customers, however, want more personalisation.

—Harsha Ramachandra & Sarika Kapoor Chokshi


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