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Myth: Rewards-Minded Travelers (RMT)* are savvier, more carefree, more cost-conscious and more frequent travelers than their counterpart non-rewards-minded travelers.

Reality: Not so much.  On the contrary, Rewards-Minded Travelers have a unique mindset and present an opportunity for marketers to truly address some unique needs.

Rewards-Minded Travelers are defined in our U.S. MONITOR 2019 data, as individuals aged 18+ with an annual income of $50k+ who have traveled for business or personal reasons in the past year.

  • *Rewards-Minded Travelers also answered top 2 on a 7 pt. importance scale for “Importance in deciding where to shop: Offers loyalty/rewards programs.”
  • Non-Rewards-Minded Travelers also answered bottom 2 on a 7 pt. importance scale for “Importance in deciding where to shop: Offers loyalty/rewards programs.”


Price is paramount but so is reducing risk

Not surprisingly, cost-savings are a driving factor in determining travel services for all frequent travelers, rewards-minded or not: 84% of RMT and 78% non-RMT say that price is a key factor.  But a deeper look at Rewards-Minded Travelers identifies a desire to mitigate risk as a primary driver of the Rewards Traveler – not saving money or collecting points.

So, while RMTs don’t travel for leisure any more frequently than the non-RMT – their decisions around where and how to travel are largely guided by ways to reduce risk. How might this show up in their travel planning? Rewards-Minded Travelers may be more inclined to look for the convenience of itineraries that are pre-planned or all-inclusive, and which also reduce the risk of over-spending their budget or planning that might go awry. Recommendations from trusted sources (websites, friends and family) can also help overcome the angst of making the wrong decision or having a trip turn into a disaster. Interestingly, 66% of RMT (vs. 40% non-RMT) believe that personal safety is an extremely important factor in determining which travel services (airlines, hotel, etc) to select. Marketers who can take advantage of these concerns by reducing risks, can potentially enhance the likelihood of a future travel purchase, by addressing the unique needs of their most valued customers.

An interesting but counter-intuitive tension is that 61% of RMT (vs. 46% of non-RMT) are more likely to choose a travel opportunity if it offers them a chance to go somewhere they’ve never been before.  A surprising finding since there are often inherent risks with any first-time experience to a new or foreign locale!

What can brands and businesses do with these insights?  Appeal to the wanderlust of the RMT who desires to seek out new locations and experiences but may be held back by the risk of making the wrong choice.

  • Offer them convenient packages that make it easy to plan
  • Keep pricing transparent to avoid surprises
  • Use testimonials and recognition from others to reinforce your brand/service
  • Offer ancillary support mechanisms such as travel insurance, money-back guarantees or other incentives (yes, points will work with these travelers!) that can erase any concerns that might hold them back.

Using MotiveMix® to find Reward-Minded Travelers

Kantar’s MotiveMix® capability enables us to pinpoint where these Rewards-Minded Travelers exist in the U.S. and target them on- or off-line.  MotiveMix is scored on a national consumer database of 240MM adults, so we can locate those micro-targets geographically. This enables brands to find and truly connect with these consumers on a human level, both online and offline, and to deliver more relevant and appealing messages, advertising and products.

Whether it’s Rewards-Minded Travelers or another micro-target that’s unique to your brand, let us help you leverage MotiveMix to uncover their core motivations and effectively connect with them in the market.

Complimentary Download of the MotiveMix Activation Scorecard

Please submit your details below to receive a copy of the Rewards-Minded Travelers scorecard and reach out to us to discuss what this might mean for your brand or category. We can find unique consumer groups in almost any category!

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