Generation (1982–1985), 2. Millenials (1985–1999) 3. iGeneration (1999–2002). Generation

Generation theory is used in
tourism to survey the patterns of tourism behavior of different segments of
travelers. According to Mannheim (1952) “the socio-historical environment in
which notable events predominates the youth of a group of individuals at the
same chronological age significantly influences the formation of these
individuals’ value systems and personality and makes them distinct in their
tastes and behavior from other generations.” (S.C. Chen. – S. Shoemaker; 2014.

Generation Y is usually defined
as those who born between 1982 and 2002 but according to Pendergast (2010)
further distinctions can be done and 3 subcategories can be created as: 1.
Generation Whys (1982–1985), 2. Millenials (1985–1999) 3. iGeneration
(1999–2002). Generation Y is seemed to be the most promising segment for the
marketers, as this wide Generation have become economic active and show dynamic
growth in consumption. Regarding their values the technology and the
globalization drives their behavior, as they are the so called Internet
inhabitant, and because they felt globalization as well as atypical family
structures from their childhood, they are very opened for new things and
relationship. “This need to live for the moment and search for hedonism does,
however, prove challenging in that it indicates that Gen Y more than most
generational cohorts are constantly seeking the next ‘big thing.” (Leask et
al., 2013, p.20.)

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Considering travel needs and
technological requirement, the Generation Y can be defined as e-travellers:
they search for information online, use their peers and social media platforms
to find the best offers, take their gadgets during their travel, so as to keep
in touch with their peers and share their experiences, reviews with the world
(Huang-Petrick, 2010, IHG, 2014). Generation Y is really critical regarding the
good price/value as well as the quality of the online communication, and can be
named as conscious costumer who is tech-savvy as well as economical at travel
decision (Moscardo, 2010). During travel they search for new things (unique
places and services) continuously, which are different than the traditional
ones. Gastronomy holds important value for them, particularly due to the
hedonist values, but also the social part is important: being together with
friends, or sharing photos about their experience for peers is highly
appreciated by them, that is the reason why they are called the “Foodie”
generation. (Pryor, L. et al, 2015). There is a debate regarding their need for
involvement, local contacts,
and interactions: according to Huang-Petrick (2010) this Generation was born to
the “high-tech high-touch” age, and as they are specifically opened, they need
to explore community values during travel as well, while the survey of IHG
(2014) shows that the segment is highly interested in using gadgets and mobile
solutions during their travel, and need less interaction, or interactions with
the locals only though the social media.

5. Research

The main
objective of the research detailed in this paper was to understand the needs of
Generation Y particularly in following the research questions below:

1) What are the special needs of Generation Y regarding
ICT–driven product development in smart destination?

2) How much do they need ICT-driven personalization and

3) What kind
of innovative communication are required by this Generation?


To analyse
these aspects quantitative research, online questionnaire were used with
questions regarding demography and basic travel habits, ICT using habits with
attitude statements measured on 1-5 Likert scale toward tourism services and
experiences and communication channels.

Regarding the
sample the followings should be highlighted: 1. Hungarian members of Generation
Y were in the limelight (because of the implications for the Hungarian cultural
landscapes) but international control group was needed as well; 2. as the
definition of Generation Y is debated, the focus was laid on one age-group,
with presumed travel potential in the present and the future. The students of
Corvinus University of Budapest (CUB) and the students of the Erasmus partners
of the CUB were chosen, as the mobility of these students (e.g. Erasmus
exchange programs, and travel around the chosen destination during Erasmus
semester) is relatively high. The objective was to carry out an exploratory
survey firstly in Hungary (instead of reaching representative level). That is
why, the self-selection and snow-ball sampling were used in April 2016.

6. Research

The sample contained 438 answers, with 412 valid ones (from
14-33 years old defined as Generation Y above), from 45 countries. The 75,47 %
of the answerers were European (including a high rate – 54% – of Hungarians);
but answers were frequent from Asia (11%), North (3%) and South (9%) America,
and rare from Africa (1%). The rate of genders are balanced (rate of males
51%). The average age of the answerers was 23,6 while the most frequent age
-range was 19-25 years.

The rest of
the answerers (58,3%) travel 2-5 times yearly, while there is a segment
(17,14%), who does it 6-10 times in a year. Leisure and recreation is the most
important motivation for travelling (26% of the answers); the second is
adventure (17%) followed by culture (17%). 1

1 The research had multiple gains. The research results regarding
Cultural Landscapes and the methodology have been published in Sziva Ivett –
Richárd Zoltay (2016) How attractive can Cultural Landscapes be for Generation
Y?” to Almatourism – Journal of Tourism, Culture and Territorial
Development. Vol 7, No 14 (2016) of December 21, 2016.

in smart destination

The most
important question was to see what kind of technology-driven services the
members of Generation Y need, as according to some theoretical approach this
segment is highly keen on using and trying gadgets, IoT. It was important to
survey how these high-tech services are required during travel, in a smart
destination, particularly in the area of accommodation, transportation, tourism