The uptake of new information and communication technologies (ICT) has been a significant driver of changes to both the way we book our travel and the workflow of enterprises in the tourism sector.
On the one hand, tourists from the European Union (EU) make large use of the internet for their trips. In 2014, more than two thirds of air trips and more than half of train trips were booked online. Accommodation was also booked online for more than half of the trips.
On the other hand, enterprises working in the accommodation sector seem to be more advanced in using ICT than many other sectors. While online ordering is offered by 17% of all enterprises in 2015, this share reached 74% for the accommodation sector.
Finnish tourists on top for online-booked flight tickets, Dutch for online-booked accommodation
Slightly more than two-thirds (67%) of flight trips made by EU tourists in 2014 were booked online. In two Member States – Finland (90%) and Netherlands (81%) – air travel was booked online in more than 80% of the cases. At the opposite end of the scale, fewer than half of flight tickets were bought over the internet in Romania (23%), Slovakia (27%), Czech Republic (38%), Belgium (45%) and Greece (47%). Rented tourist accommodation was booked online for the majority (55%) of the trips of EU residents in 2014. There were however big differences across Member States, with accommodation booked online for more than 2 out of every 3 trips by residents of the Netherlands (69%), France (68%) and Luxembourg (67%), while online booking accounted for fewer than 10% in Romania (7%) and Bulgaria (9%).
Website functionalities widely used by tourism accommodation establishments
Websites are the starting point for e-business. In 2015, 95% of all EU enterprises in the accommodation sector had a website, compared with 75% of enterprises of 10 or more persons in the entire economy. With 74% of enterprises providing online ordering, reservation or booking through their website, the accommodation sector was significantly ahead of the whole economy (17%) in the EU. As a consequence, the shares of enterprises that have received online orders show a similar gap: 19% for all enterprises and 63% for those working in the accommodation sector.
This information on ICT use in tourism is issued by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union, on the occasion of today’s World Telecommunication and Information Society Day. It is complemented with a more detailed article on the Eurostat website.