Travel urged to “wake up” to mature market needs

Over 50s
The mature market is one of the fastest growing sectors

The travel industry is blinkered when it comes to the needs of the older traveller, according to charity Age UK.

The charity’s Engage Business Network, which aims to share insight to businesses, found 52% of those aged 50 or over travel overseas at least once a year and 23% would do more if they felt more catered for.

The network encouraged spaces like airports and hotels to have an ‘inclusive design’ which takes in accessibility needs or thought around those who are not as mobile.

It will be holding a seminar on 25 June around the topic with Feroze Varavia from Gatwick Airport sharing how it developed its terminals to support the growing mature traveller market.

“Nearly one in five people aged 50+ say that the “fuss” at airports is the main reason why they do not use air travel so changes like Gatwick’s are exactly what Age UK’s Engage Business Network is encouraging through the adoption of inclusive design. Meeting and understanding the needs of the older population is crucial if airports, and the travel industry as a whole, are going to market to the older population successfully,” said Ian Rutter, senior manager at Age UK’s Engage Business Network.

“Age UK’s Engage Business Network believes that inclusive design needs to become part of mainstream thought across all sectors including both meeting the needs of our ageing population and improving accessibility and the experience for all,” he added.

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