AARP, the membership organization for those who are age 50 or older, has started its own travel site that contains numerous features to help its members find and locate the destination that is right for them.
The website, called AARP Travel, has destination guides, articles and tips, a trip finder, and a section that lists AARP member discounts. The trip finder, touted as a personalized travel planning tool, uses pictures and visual questions to help people determine the trip that is right for them. Users have the option of choosing from as far ranging categories as fine dining, music and theatre, and sightseeing.
“Research shows that 1 in 5 travelers doesn’t have a destination in mind when they begin an online search,” independent travel analyst Henry Harteveldt told CNBC. So “it’s smart” that AARP’s new website uses photographs to represent different things people can do and in different places.
The travel site comes just months after AARP completed an online travel study. The organization surveyed 1000 travelers age 50 or older, half members of AARP and the other half not, who have used a travel site within the past two years.
They found that people age 50 or older take about six non-business related trips at least 50 miles from home each year and that eight out of ten people age 50 or older plan to use websites to help guide their travels.
They also found that people age 50 or older spend on average 30-36 hours per year planning non-business related trips and would prefer to spend 12-18 hours per year online planning for non-business related trips.
AARP Travel still uses Expedia to book trips and hotels and flights, and a quick click on the “Contact A Travel Agent” feature leads directly to Liberty Travel, which features AARP member advantages.
AARP states that it is a membership organization leading positive social change and delivering value to people age 50 or over through information, advocacy, and service.
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