The first tourism industry study of its kind has revealed that a majority of tourism businesses have now considered targeting the lucrative market comprised of LGBT travellers, however the research also uncovers some substantial industry missteps. Areas the industry is doing badly with include not understanding the potential of the market to add revenues to their bottom line as well as certain misplaced fears about risks in engaging with this market.

Key study findings of the Out Now survey include:

– Two out of three (66%) organisations responding have considered targeting the LGBT market.

– More than half (57%) have invested some resources (either, time, money or in-kind) to develop the market.

– Most though (59%) have spent under USD$10,000 to date targeting the LGBT market.

– Most common activities undertaken include: reviewing published media coverage on LGBT travel research, advertising in LGBT media, using social media.

– 58% of respondents that undertook targeted marketing saw increased LGBT customer bookings as a direct result.

– 90% of respondents reported positive outcomes from targeting the market.

– More than one in five (21%) respondents say they made mistakes when they first targeted the group. These included: mistakenly using stereotypes, making campaigns too focused on gay men, and including sexual imagery or rainbows in their creative.

– 10% of respondents are confident LGBT travel directly accounts for more than USD$250,000 annual revenues to their business with a further 32% not sure of the actual amount or preferring not to answer.

The ‘Out Now Global LGBT Travel Industry Survey’ undertook research from May to November 2015 and was implemented in partnership with World Travel Market London. A total of 661 respondents from more than 90 countries completed the survey. An Online Training Program is available for those organizations wanting to learn more.


About the Author

Bryen Dunn is a freelance journalist based in Toronto with a focus on tourism, lifestyle, entertainment and community issues. He has written several travel articles and has an extensive portfolio of celebrity interviews with musicians, actors and other public personalities. He’s willing to take on any assignments of interest, attend parties with free booze, listen to rants, and travel the world in search of the great unknown. He’s eager to discover the new, remember the past, and look into the future.