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Press Release   •   Mar 23, 2016 10:34 GMT

Affluent Millennials (also known as Generation Y) should be ‘cultivated and engaged’ by the tourism industry as they become the world’s biggest spenders by 2030, says a new VisitScotland paper.

The Luxury Generations think-piece finds that those born between 1980 and 1994 (Millennials), who currently represent over a tenth of global luxury expenditure, are predicted to outspend affluent Baby Boomers (those born between 1946 and 1964) within the next 15 years.

It reveals that as the global economy recovers, the global luxury industry is growing accordingly. It is expected that approximately $110 billion will be spent on luxury travel by High Net-Worth* individuals and their expenditure is forecast to rise by approximately 15% per annum.

A large number of these affluents are based in some of Scotland’s target markets of North America (United States and Canada), Europe (UK, Germany, France), Asia (China, Japan) and Australia.

Authors of the paper, the national tourism organisation’s Insight Department, suggest that the tourism industry should start “cultivating and engaging with Millennials” who are predicted to replace the 50+ demographic as the number one generation in spending power.

According to the report, affluent Millennials view travel as their birthright – taking the most trips of any age group – with travel expenditure increasing by approximately 20% every year as they get older.

For Baby Boomers, travel ranks among their top activities with spend increasing significantly after age 65. Boomers’ travel nowadays also incorporates the entire family.

Chris Greenwood, Senior Tourism Insight Manager at VisitScotland, said:

“This Luxury Generations paper gives food for thought on what changes the Scottish tourism industry can expect in luxury consumer travel over the next fifteen years.

“Affluent consumers are an important contribution to the visitor economy, with many of them found in Scotland’s key international target markets. By analysing consumer behavior, the industry can better prepare itself to develop an engaging product which will continue to entice the high-end traveller to Scotland.”

*High Net-Worth generally describes individuals with an annual disposable household income of US$100,000 and above.

The Luxury Generations paper can be found here:

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Notes to Editors

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  • The organisation’s core objective is to contribute to the Tourism 2020 Strategy ambition of growing tourism revenues by £1 billion by 2020.
  • This will be supported by seven overarching strategies:
    1. Marketing: we will market Scotland and its outstanding assets to visitors from all parts of the world, including the promotion of Scotland to people living in Scotland       to visit different parts of the country
    2. Events: we will support the national events strategy and its delivery, and sustain, develop and promote Scotland’s international profile as one of the world’s foremost events destinations
    3. Internationalisation and International Engagement: we will utilise all our platforms to enable Scottish-based tourism businesses to better understand international       opportunities and market to a global audience and we will work within One       Scotland Partnerships to optimise the potential of Scotland’s Diaspora and our strategic partners at regional, European and global levels
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  • 2016 will shine a spotlight on Scotland’s achievements in innovation, architecture and design through a wide-ranging, variety of new and existing activity.
  • The Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design begins on 1 January 2016 and ends on 31 December 2016 and will build on the momentum generated by the current 2015 Year of Food and Drink as well as previous years including Homecoming Scotland 2014, the Year of Creative and the Year of Natural.
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