Back in the summer of 2016, Travel Juneau (formerly Juneau Convention & Visitors Bureau) contracted the McDowell Group to analyze data collected from the recent statewide Alaska Visitor Statistics Program (AVSP). The goal of the project was to understand visitor decision making, satisfaction with destinations and spending. The results came in the Juneau Visitor Profile, released last week.
The survey revealed that in 2016, 78,000 of Juneau’s 1,093,000 visitors (roughly seven percent) were independent travelers, arriving by air or ferry, which confirms Juneau’s role as a hub for independent travel in Southeast Alaska. Furthermore, 63 percent of travelers visiting only Juneau reported visiting Alaska previously (4.5 on average) and 25 percent of cruise passengers indicated they intend to return to Alaska within the next five years. Approximately 98 percent of all Juneau visitors also said they would recommend an Alaska trip to friends and/or family.
The report was not without its surprises either; on average, cruise visitors to Juneau took 8.8 months to decide to come to Alaska, while independent visitors decided in 5.3 months—a shorter planning timeline than previously estimated. Additionally, cruise visitors book major travel 6.6 months in advance, whereas independent travelers booked only 3.1 months in advance.
Travel Juneau will be conducting a Juneau-focused survey during the 2018 summer season, which will include Alaska residents. The McDowell Group has also been contracted once again for a winter survey directed at meeting planners and attendees to more accurately gauge the site-selection process and spending habits, to generate an updated calculation of the economic impact of meetings upon Juneau.
More information and the Juneau Visitor Profile (available as a PDF) are on the Travel Juneau website, traveljuneau.com.