The junior market – that is, students under the age of 18 – has been a growth segment in language travel in recent years. Demand is being driven by a greater emphasis on foreign language learning in markets abroad, and by an increasing interest on the part of parents in boosting their children’s language proficiency. However, the junior segment is also susceptible to economic conditions and other market disruptions and some destinations – notably Canada and the UK – saw a decline in junior numbers in 2015. Overall, the segment appears poised for further growth and development, and consumer demand is shifting to more specialised programmes for youth, including courses focused on preparation for academic studies abroad.
Junior students have become an important growth segment in recent years, especially in Europe, where students under age 18 now compose a significant proportion of language travel enrolments. Juniors accounted for nearly half of all language students in the UK (see chart below) and Ireland (47% each) and Malta (48%) in 2015.
Language schools are reporting that students are travelling to learn a language at ever-younger ages. READ MORE