Expedia: Last-Minute Mobile Hotel Bookings Spike on New Year’s Eve

Study of last-minute mobile booking behavior reveals that “revelry” and “romance” are most cited causes

BELLEVUE, Wash., 2012-12-28 — /travelprnews.com/ — Having witnessed a spike in last-minute mobile hotel bookings during different national holidays, Expedia.com®, the world’s leading online travel agency, today released the results of a study of such behavior. Conducted online by Harris Interactive among 2,893 online U.S. adults, the study examined consumer willingness to use a mobile device to book a hotel room within 24 hours, and the various reasons for doing so.

An analysis of Expedia booking patterns shows that the week leading up to New Year’s Eve tends to see a surge in hotel rooms booked via mobile at the last minute. Such bookings are up to 50% higher than similar bookings in November and the first half of December. Many last-minute holiday bookings, in fact, are made late at night, after the New Year has been rung in. According to the Harris Study, among adults with a history of booking a last-minute room on New Year’s Eve, the most commonly cited reason (selected by 50% of these respondents) was necessity; they had consumed one or two drinks too many and elected to spend the night in a hotel. The second-most cited reason (selected by 35% of these respondents) waspersonal; they had found love (or believed they had), and chose to explore those emotions immediately, in a nearby hotel room.

The third most-cited reason (27% of these respondents) was pure whimsy – they felt they owed it to themselves to start the year in a comfortable hotel bed, perhaps with a free continental breakfast. Unnamed “Other” reasons were cited by 22% of these respondents, and a full 3% of these consumers gave no reason whatsoever for booking a last-minute room on New Year’s Eve via mobile. They just went ahead and did it.

NOTE: Consumers who indicated they’d ever booked a last minute room on New Year’s Eve were not required to choose a single reason for booking a New Year’s Eve hotel room at the last minute via mobile. They could choose one or more of the reasons. Thus, the percentage of responses to this question exceeds 100%.

To celebrate revelry, romance and all reasons for booking a last-minute hotel via mobile, Expedia will award 1,000 bonus Expedia Points to Expedia®Rewards members who book a hotel room through Expedia on December 31, up to 11:00pm via a mobile device. Membership is free. Expedia customers can join Expedia Rewards by visiting http://www.expedia.com/rewards. In addition, Expedia is offering a coupon for customers who book their New Years Eve hotel on the Expedia mobile app.

According to the survey, 13% of American consumers have booked a last-minute hotel room using a travel app or a travel website via a mobile device, defined here as a phone or a tablet.That percentage should rise; 37% of those who have never done this expressed they would be willing to consider doing so in the future. Among those who have already done so, 46% booked a three-star hotel on their most recent booking. 39% booked a four-star hotel. 6% booked a five-star hotel, while 7% booked a 2-star hotel and 2% settled for one star.

Expedia regularly sees mobile last-minute booking spikes during the holidays. In the first quarter of 2012, the busiest mobile booking period was around Valentine’s Day weekend. The next-busiest booking period was around St. Patrick’s Day, while the weekend following New Year’s Eve was the third-busiest. These patterns suggest that romance and revelry are among the prime causes of mobile hotel bookings, no matter the time of year. And when the two factors combine, mobile booking surge.

Expedia offers hotel booking via its apps for the iPhone, iPad, Android phones and Windows 8 tablets.

This survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Interactive on behalf of Expedia from December 11-13, 2012, among 2,893 adults ages 18 and older. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated.

For more information, please contact:

Sarah Gavin
(425) 679-8917

Devon Nagle
HL Group
(646) 460-8911

About Expedia

Expedia.com is the world’s leading online travel site, helping millions of travelers per month easily plan and book travel. Expedia.com (http://www.expedia.com/, 1-800-EXPEDIA) aims to provide the latest technology and the widest selection of vacation packagesflightshotelsrental carscruises and in-destination activities, attractions, services and  travel apps. With the Expedia Best Price Guarantee, Expedia.com customers can get the best rates available online for all types of travel. Whether you want to relax in Myrtle Beach, ski in Whistler or swim in Bora Bora, we know every trip and every traveler is unique and we want to help you Find Yours™.

Expedia, Expedia.com, Airplane logo and Vacation Deprivation are trademarks or registered trademarks of Expedia, Inc. in the U.S. and/or other countries. Other logos or product and company names mentioned herein may be the property of their respective owners. © 2011 Expedia, Inc. All rights reserved. CST: 2029030-50

SOURCE: Expedia, Inc.
Web site: http://www.expedia.com/

About Harris Interactive
Harris Interactive is one of the world’s leading market research firms, leveraging research, technology, and business acumen to transform relevant insight into actionable foresight. Known widely for the Harris Poll® and for pioneering innovative research methodologies, Harris offers proprietary solutions in the areas of market and customer insight, corporate brand and reputation strategy, and marketing, advertising, public relations and communications research. Harris possesses expertise in a wide range of industries including health care, technology, public affairs, energy, telecommunications, financial services, insurance, media, retail, restaurant, and consumer package goods. Additionally, Harris has a portfolio of multi-client offerings that complement our custom solutions while maximizing our client’s research investment. Serving clients in more than 196 countries and territories through our North American and European offices, Harris specializes in delivering research solutions that help us – and our clients—stay ahead of what’s next. For more information, please visit www.harrisinteractives.com.

Full Methodology

This survey was conducted online within the United States between December 11-13, 2012 among 2,893 adults (aged 18 and over) by Harris Interactive on behalf Expedia via its Quick Query omnibus product. Figures for age, sex, race/ethnicity, education, region and household income were weighted where necessary to bring them into line with their actual proportions in the population. This data were weighted to reflect the composition of the adult online population.

All sample surveys and polls, whether or not they use probability sampling, are subject to multiple sources of error which are most often not possible to quantify or estimate, including sampling error, coverage error, error associated with nonresponse, error associated with question wording and response options, and post-survey weighting and adjustments. Therefore, Harris Interactive avoids the words “margin of error” as they are misleading. All that can be calculated are different possible sampling errors with different probabilities for pure, unweighted, random samples with 100% response rates. These are only theoretical because no published polls come close to this ideal.

Respondents for this survey were selected from among those who have agreed to participate in Harris Interactive surveys. The data have been weighted to reflect the composition of the adult population. Because the sample is based on those who agreed to participate in the Harris Interactive panel, no estimates of theoretical sampling error can be calculated.