While smartphone bookings soar globally, some countries continue to blaze their way as leaders in mobile travel. Asia Pacific (APAC) leads all markets in mobile booking adoption, according to Phocuswright’s Global Online Travel Overview Fourth Edition Global. The report provides and compares total and online travel gross bookings for six regions: the U.S./Canada, Europe, Eastern Europe, APAC, the Middle East and Latin America.
APAC mobile bookings are projected to grow from 24% of the online travel market in 2015 to 37% in 2017. That compares to both the U.S. and Europe, where mobile penetration is expected to be just 24% by the end of this year.
Electronic wallets from companies including Alipay in China and Paytm in India, mobile payment solutions and call-to-book/partial online payment options have opened the floodgates for mobile transactions.
“In China, mobile-only discounts from intermediaries are fueling smartphone bookings among the country’s massive subscriber base,” says Phocuswright’s senior vice president, research, Lorraine Sileo. “In India, online travel agencies are aggressively promoting app downloads as mobile has emerged as a new battleground for intermediaries.”
While travel sellers in Japan are not promoting mobile over other channels, suppliers and intermediaries have embraced mobile by enhancing their mobile web and app offerings.