Employees remain motivated by incentive travel: IRF study

i By July 19, 2021 No Comments

Employees continue to be strongly motivated by group incentive travel, according to new research from the Incentive Research Foundation (IRF).

Employees continue to be strongly motivated by incentive travel, according to the Incentive Research Foundation's new report, The Impact of Destination Choice on Motivation. The image here shows the cover of the report.For the study, the IRF surveyed 401 employees, all but five of whom were from the United States. Qualifications to respond to the survey included being currently employed in a full-time sales role and having been eligible for an incentive travel reward sometime within the past three years. Eighty percent of the employees surveyed said group incentive travel is a strong motivator.

This and other results from the survey were then combined with booking data provided by Cvent for incentive trips planned for the immediate future and similar data for cruise line incentive trips quoted through Q1 2021, which were provided by 3D Cruise Partners. The IRF’s analysis of these data streams is presented in its latest white paper, The Impact of Destination Choice on Motivation.

“As global vaccination rates increase and restrictions are relaxed, incentive program participants are becoming more comfortable with traveling,” said Stephanie Harris, president, IRF. “But employee preferences around destinations and experience design have changed since the pandemic, so planners will need to rethink their incentive trip strategy. The Impact of Destination Choice on Motivation examines how the post-pandemic incentive travel experience can be designed to achieve your target performance goals.”

The report examines the top employee destination preferences and compares them to actual bookings and quote requests. It also looks at the aspects of how experiences are designed to determine the elements that provide maximum inspiration to earn the award.

Key insights include:

  • Participants want less crowding, and more open spaces, remote areas, and private residences
  • Over half (52%) would most prefer an incentive trip lasting between six and nine days
  • Respondents with children under the age of 18 living at home found group travel much more motivating than did those without children living at home
  • Hawaii, Florida, and California are all within the ‘top’ preferred regions and are also seeing high volume RFP activity
  • While Mexico has limited motivational value to program earners, there is significant RFP activity by program owners
  • A shift in cruise preferences favors Europe over the Caribbean. European river and Mediterranean cruises account for 57% of requested quotes so far in 2021
  • Going to an appealing destination and being able to invite a guest were the most important aspects for creating a highly motivating incentive

To download the full study and white paper, visit the IRF’s The Impact of Destination Choice on Motivation webpage.