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Student and Youth

Sponsored by Blue Man Group

What is Student and Youth Travel?

Student and youth travel is the packaging of travel products and services for age groups ranging from elementary school to young professionals. Students and youth often travel for the primary purposes of participating in educational opportunities, leisure activities, cultural experiences, musical and art performances, and/or sporting events.


Student and Youth Travel Market Facts

  • 56 percent of NTA tour operators are involved in student and youth travel.
  • The youth travel segment of the industry has grown faster than global travel overall. (WYSE Travel Confederation)
  • The global youth travel market currently is valued at $173 billion with almost 190 million international trips per year. (WYSE Travel Confederation)
  • By 2020 the youth travel market is expected to grow to $320 billion per annum with almost 300 million international youth trips per year. (Source: WYSE Travel Confederation and UNWTO Forecast)
  • 20 percent of all international tourists are student and youth. (Source: UNWTO)
  • Spending in most sectors of student and youth travel ranges between $1,000 to $6,000 per trip. (Source: WYSE Travel Confederation)
  • 52 percent of tour operator revenues are derived from grades 9-12 while 28 percent are from grades 6-8. (Source: SYTA)
  • In the United States:
    • 88,982 elementary schools with enrollment of 38,860,000 students
    • 27,575 secondary school with enrollment of 16,375,000 students I
    • In addition, there are 14,837 combined elementary and secondary schools
    • Home school enrollment includes 1,508,000 students
    • 3,219,458 public school teachers; 72,000 charter school teachers;456,270 private school teachers.
    • More than 20 million students attend nearly 5,000 U.S.-based colleges and universities. (Source: U.S. Digest of Education Statistics)

What to Know about Student and Youth Travel

  • Growth factors in student and youth travel include people traveling at younger ages, increased student population and travel programs becoming a more common expectation and practice among school systems.
  • Travel is a source of education as well as career and self-development for students and youth.
  • Students and youth want to become engaged when visiting destinations and attractions.
  • Students and youth utilize the newest technologies when traveling.
  • Students and youth like contributing to places they visit. (Sources: SYTA and WYSE Travel Confederation)

Sponsored by Blue Man Group

Blue Man Group

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  • Young people are invariably at the leading edge of change and innovation, and the travel industry is no exception. Young people think outside the box, push boundaries and experiment with the new. In an era of unprecedented challenge for the travel industry, youth travel represents not just an important market segment but also a vital resource for innovation and change.The Power of Youth Travel Published by UNWTO and WYSE Travel Confederation, NA, NA
  • Just calling a tour ‘educational' does not cut it anymore. School principals need to feel confident that standards of learning are really being offered on a tour in a way that can be demonstrated. Therefore, it is imperative that attractions be able to show how a visit to their site can enhance learning objectives. Standardized testing is a reality in public education, and tours that can help prepare students for these tests are going to be more marketable to schools.Ed Lattin, President, Educational Tours