Nigeria has emerged 5th overall ahead of countries in Europe, the Middle East and other parts of the world as ready to embrace new technologies as more travellers from Nigeria are turning towards digital solutions to manage and effect their travel .
This was a major finding of the 2018 Global Digital Traveller Research, an independent global travel study conducted by Travelport, the world’s leading global commerce platform.
The rankings in order from 1-25 are: India, Indonesia, Brazil, China, Nigeria, United Arab Emirates, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Colombia, Mexico, South Africa, Singapore, Argentina, South Korea, Hong Kong, USA, Russia, Italy, Spain, France, Australia, Canada, United Kingdom, Japan, Germany.
The 2018 survey, which covered 16,200 respondents from 25 countries, including Nigeria, showed that Nigerian travellers are digital-savvy, mobile native and ready to embrace new technology for a seamless travel experience. Nigeria ranked 5th globally in the Digital Traveller Rankings, ahead of all the European and North American countries surveyed.
For instance, Nigerian travellers are heavily reliant on their mobile phones. 85% of travellers in Nigeria were shown in the study to use on their smart phones when researching their trips, and 78% use their phones to make bookings. More than half of all travellers (66%) also said they would be lost without their smart phones, and 74% worry about their technology failing, or their phones running out of battery power.
Nigerian travellers were the most likely of those surveyed to want to share their biometrics, to facilitate a better travel experience.
Flight related mobile apps have also become a critical feature for Nigerian travellers. They use multiple apps (an average of 13.6) when researching and booking a trip. These apps are used to search and book flights (82%), for flight alerts (75%) and for mobile check-ins (74%). Almost half of all travellers (46%) would prefer to see their trip itinerary (flights, hotels, trains, etc.) in one place, while 38% report that they find it unsatisfying to book everything separately. 45% prefer to check-in to a hotel via a mobile app. This demonstrates a clear appetite to work with travel providers which can offer a consolidated digital experience.
According to the report, not only are Nigerian travellers becoming more digitally savvy, they are actually now more discerning. 76% of them think that digital boarding passes make travel much easier, while 68% avoid hotels that charge for Wi-Fi. Clearly free Wi-Fi has gone from a marketing opportunity to an expected necessity for most travellers.
When it comes to payments, a large number (72%) of travellers in Nigeria have used a digital wallet or payment app (e.g. Apple Pay, Alipay, etc.) at some point while travelling, while 31% use them all the time.
The report shows that review sites such as TripAdvisor tend to have a big influence on Nigerian travellers (81%), with 55% of respondents saying that it actually has the greatest influence over their travel choices. For travel research, 82% of the respondents rely on videos and photos posted by friends on social media.
Guido Verweij, Travelport’s Managing Director for Africa, said: “The 2018 Global Digital Traveller Research clearly shows that demand fromNigerian travellers for digital solutions that improve their travel experience is sky-high. This is only going to escalate further in the years to come, so if you work in the travel industry and don’t already have a digital engagement plan, it’s time to get one!”