The Tipping Point for Travel Loyalty: 2024 Loyalty Trends

It might not be entirely surprising that after nearly two years of surging inflation rates, rising prices, and elevated demand for all kinds of goods and services, consumers increasingly look to their loyalty programs to save money and provide the value they can't get elsewhere. Value, it seems, is a driving force for loyalty program member engagement.  

This is the overarching finding from our latest survey report, 2024 Loyalty Trends: The Role of Travel Loyalty Programs in the New Value Economy, available for download now. This report, taken together with our Holiday Travel 2023 report and Travel Trends 2023 report, paints a clear picture of how American consumers approach their loyalty programs, travel behaviors, and the intersection of the two. 

But how are travel loyalty program professionals reacting to these consumer trends? What are brands prioritizing, and how are they assessing the performance of their loyalty programs?  

 Evolving brand priorities 

Our report, based on a survey of 151 loyalty program managers and 2,116 U.S. consumers conducted in late 2023, also examines these trends from businesses’ perspectives. For example, customer retention (66%) was the top metric program managers used to measure the success of their programs, while 50% of companies selected membership growth as their top KPI. But "impact on revenue,” the second-most cited goal at 65%, reflects a stronger focus on delivering financial results. 

The report concludes that brands can better reach their loyalty program performance goals by meeting members’ top demands: delivering value. The chief way to unlock that value is by creating a richer, more customized loyalty experience that aligns with members’ priorities. 

Where brands and travel loyalty members align 

Despite some persistent disconnects, the good news is that many brands are already pivoting to meet member expectations. One area where this is most apparent, according to our survey data, is in the area of sustainability. 

A majority (55%) of consumers would choose one loyalty program over another if it prioritized sustainability. Understanding this, brands have increased their sustainability offerings, with 62% offering bonuses and incentives for booking sustainable options and 60% planning to invest more in sustainable redemption options – both significant increases over 2022.  

As a result, 60% of the businesses we surveyed saw reduced churn and increased retention after implementing sustainability initiatives. This shows that sustainability – which has long been considered a nice-to-have offering – has a real and measurable impact not only on the loyalty program experience from the member’s perspective but also on loyalty program performance. 

Driving results with a better loyalty experience 

The alignment on sustainability isn’t the only area of commonality our survey data uncovered. But to learn where brands and members are in sync and where expectation gaps remain, you'll have to download the full report. 

2024 Loyalty Trends: The Role of Travel Loyalty Programs in the New Value Economy is part of the Tipping Point Survey Report Series, which delves into current travel trends and consumer loyalty dynamics. For businesses looking to seize opportunities related to travel, loyalty, and consumer engagement, staying informed is key – download the report here and sign up to receive additional informative reports as they become available.  

New call-to-action

Want more insights and news from iSeatz? Subscribe to our Newsletter.

Help Them Check Off Their Bucket List
Our travel and lifestyle portfolio has everything from first-class flights to fitness classes, including over 400,000 tours and activities.