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The Rise of Hotel Gift Cards and Voucher Sales

From staycations to food and beverage takeaways, hotels are looking for alternative ways to reassure and retain customers and generate incremental revenue where they can during this pandemic. In this blog post, we bring greater insights to the rise in gift cards segment.


Though the hotel gift card market is fragmented, it has gained popularity and open doors for opportunities with the global growth of the E-commerce sector, hence we an increasing trend in 2020 with the purchase of hotel gift cards. Hotels remind their customers that they take a breather and purchase gift cards to look forward to a positive future experience. Buying hotel gift cards will support the travel and hotel industry getting through the pandemic so they can welcome you when it's safe to travel again.

(Source: Persistence Market Research)

Between 2020 to 2030, the hotel industry's gift card market is expected to increase revenue due to technological advancement and consumer behavior change. The growth will be driven by young leisure travelers and the adoption of instant and seamless shopping experience. According to the Persistence Market Research report (PMR), Asia's annual growth rate is a faster-growing market with more than 23% forecast projected. Besides purchasing gift cards as personalized gifts, Hotels and other third parties offer corporate hotel gift cards to influence market growth positively. Companies are showing encouragement to employees in the form of gift cards to recognize their achievements and contributions.

Gift Card Market: Segmentation by Geography (Source: Technavio)

As of 2019, the global sale of the gift card market is US$619.25 billion. (Source: Allied Market Research). North America holds the largest share of 41% in the market. However, the North American market will be slower as the East Asia market is expected to grow in forecasting years due to the high number of retailers and hotel chains. (Source: Technavio)

A gift voucher is a brilliant marketing tool because it enables you to target consumers you typically would not reach. Promoting gift cards is a great way to maximize the property's revenue and visibility around what people can experience at the hotel. Promoting characteristic that is distinctive for the property that stands out form your customers. It builds the hotel's credibility and reputation. Plus, it's easy to set up.

What are some of the advantages of hotels offering gift certificates?

It increases the visibility of the hotel by attracting customers. The Probability for the receiver will return; after a satisfying experience, more purchases will increase customer loyalty—also, a boost in cash during the holiday season. Hotel gift cards will help advertise the hotel's services and brand with a well-designed voucher with images and clean branding, showing off the property. If gift certs expire, it is an additional advantage for hoteliers since cash isn't reimbursed to customers who do not redeem or use their gift cards.

Why do people generally buy gift cards?

It's a great gift to give someone who enjoys traveling an experience rather than products. To maximize the value of the gift cards, guests will manage them like investments. Presents can be purchased in the comfort of home, choice of delivery, whether it arrives in the post or instant e-voucher delivery. This easy purchasing option is a significant factor in attracting consumers to purchase online, resulting in a demand for a gift card that drives the market growth. As of 2018, North America accounted for 34% of revenue share in the gift card market. (Source: Coherent Market Insights). Since gift cards are operated in multiple currencies, it's possible to purchase a gift card for someone overseas.

Post COVID-19 travel is unlikely to resemble what we all remember; it is essential to adjust our expectations. Many hotel gift cards will stay valid until 2022, whether afternoon teas, spa days, dining experiences or overnight stays. The more flexibility in deals, the better. Marriott International, with over 7000 properties worldwide, is selling gift cards at 20% off. The Hilton gift card is usable at all 6,000 properties where guests can use it to book a stay, play golf, take a relaxing spa treatment, and more. Sixty SoHo in New York selling $300 gift certificates for $200. Airbnb is selling digital gift cards with a $200 maximum limit as the demand for private vacation rentals increases.

Purchasing e-gift cards have become convenient and economical due to the increase in technologies and optimal services. We are desired to escape this darkness by lifting our spirits and encouraging travelers to plan trips and offer discounted gift cards to provide hotel to recover its lost value.

About Rev-Mantra Pte. Ltd.

Rev-Mantra management consulting services focus on our clients' most critical issues and opportunities: strategy, marketing (offline/online), distribution, sales representation, and analytics across the service industry and geographies. We bring deep, functional expertise, but are known for our holistic perspective: we capture value across boundaries and between the silos of any organization. We have proven a multiplier effect from optimizing the sum of the parts, not just the individual pieces.

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