Kids are off to a flying start, Nectar's survey finds

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By: Wise Marketer Staff |

Posted on July 25, 2005

A third of the UK's children experience air travel before they reach school age, and almost all fly by the time they reach the age of 20, according to a survey by the UK coalition loyalty programmer Nectar and its travel partner

The survey of 7,000 adults found that one-eighth of children (13%) flew before their first birthday, and more than one-third (38%) had been abroad by the time they started school.

As air travel becomes cheaper and more accessible to the masses, the trend for young travel is increasing generation by generation. Looking instead at the childrens' parents, the survey found that 5% had flown before they turned one and 12% had flown before school age (down 8 percentage points and 26 percentage points on their childrens' record, respectively).

Not surprisingly, today's grandparents reported even less air travel at early ages. Only 2% of today's over 65's had flown before they were four years old, and 70% travelled abroad for the first time in their early 20's - but even that statistic is biased: these travellers were mostly men (85% men compared to 65% women), who most likely travelled to serve in the second world war.

Lifetime flight statistics
By the time they reach their 20's, members of the modern jet-set generation have almost all travelled abroad (90%) and, in most cases, have travelled as extensively as their grandparents have done in their entire lifetime. On average, today's twenty-somethings have clocked up 186,375 miles each. They have visited, on average, eight countries, seventeen foreign cities, and taken eighteen flights each. By contrast, the over 65's have clocked up an average 12 countries over a lifetime, visited 25 cities in total and taken 28 flights.

According to Chris Sherlock, marketing director for, "Parents are taking children away at a younger age which gives them the confidence to carry on their travels independently. Take the 'gap year' trend for example: Teens are setting off to explore foreign countries before college or university, with very adventurous itineraries. This, even twenty years ago, would have been extremely unusual."

Making travel easier
Richard Campbell, LMUK's marketing director, added: "Our study revealed that people are travelling abroad, on average, 2.4 times a year and it's fast becoming the UK's favourite pastime. Only 2% of Britons have never been abroad and almost of half of Britons (48%) would like the opportunity to travel more often. By linking with eBookers we hope to help make this a reality for them."

According to Campbell, LMUK's aim is to make travel even easier for British consumers, who can redeem Nectar points for flights through eBookers. There are four ways in which Nectar members can pay for their travel at eBookers: 100% points, 75% points plus cash, 50% points plus cash, or 25% points plus cash. Examples of the number of points required to travel free include: London to Paris (from 5,200 points), Dublin to Manchester, Glasgow or Birmingham (from 5,600 points), and London to Amsterdam (from 3,200 points).

Nectar facts
More than half of all UK households now have a Nectar card, and the average household using Nectar has the potential to earn 7.50 a month (90.00 a year) or more in rewards.

Nectar points can be collected through 15 UK partner and brands: Sainsbury's, Debenhams, Barclaycard, BP, Thresher, Adams Kids, Ford, EDF Energy, All:Sports, Winemark, Hertz, Magnet, Beefeater, Brewers Fayre and eBookers.

For additional information:
·  Visit LMUK at
·  Visit eBookers at