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07/13/2021

New Global Payments Data Reveals Hotels Sustainably Grew Market Share Versus Airlines

Analysis also reveals that hotel chains have capitalized on the pandemic to sustainably grow their share of global rewards currency transfers.

Today Ascenda, the technology company that makes banking rewarding, revealed hotels managed to sustainably capitalise on the increase in domestic travel by analysing points transfer volumes from its network TransferConnect, the world’s largest global exchange for frequent traveller miles and points.

TransferConnect facilitates the exchange of rewards currencies between financial services brands and a broad set of hotel chains, major airlines, super apps and retailers worldwide. The network enables banks across 40 markets to connect with 50 major merchants and delivers access to real-time points transfers for 1.2 billion consumers worldwide.

In addition to these strong signals of returning consumer confidence in air travel, the analysis also reveals that hotel chains have capitalized on the pandemic to sustainably grow their share of global rewards currency transfers. Following the onset of the crisis, transfers into hotel points had naturally gained relative share as consumers were forced to opt for local vacations. Hotel points represented less than 10% of currency transfer volume in 2019, increasing three-fold in March 2020 to 30%. What’s most remarkable, however, is that the behavior change has persisted into 2021, even during the recent months of recovery, indicating that the chains have sustainably grown their level of engagement with loyalty program members.

The lodging rewards programs have thus sustainably grown their level of engagement with consumers in tandem with a recovery of transfers to airlines.

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Sebastian Grobys, Chief Commercial Officer at Ascenda, said: “As the pandemic unfolded, the world's eyes were glued to plummeting operating statistics published by airlines and travel industry bodies across the world. Since then, there have been many attempts to analyse the slope of the recovery curve and make predictions about the future, for example looking at forward booking patterns. Today we’re excited to contribute a new and unique source of data that shows frequent flier mile transfers are rising significantly in a strong signal of accelerating recovery.”

The newly released TransferConnect report is available here for download.