(ORLANDO, FL) -- Three out ten cell phones in use in the United States are now "smart phones" with Internet connectivity. And one of the most intriguing questions facing travel service marketers is how travelers are using these devices to plan, purchase and share information about both destinations and travel service suppliers. The results of our new 2010 Portrait of American Travelers provide some insightful answers.
As reflected in the table below, nearly two in ten travelers have downloaded a travel-related application (app) to their smart phone. Among them, nearly one-half have navigated a destination using the built in GPS functionality or searched for the latest information on flight schedules and delays. Nearly three in ten have compared airfares or hotel rates or shared information or photos about their travel experiences using their smart phone. Approximately one in six has booked air travel or lodging or viewed a virtual visitor guide that provides information on things to do and see while visiting a destination. Finally, more than one in ten active travelers has used their Smartphone to download and redeem mobile coupons, while one in twenty has downloaded an audio walking tour of a specific destination:
Clearly, mobile devices are destined to play an increasingly important role in the distribution and sale of travel services in years ahead.