Zapwater Communications, in partnership with PR consultancy group Travel Lifestyle Network (TLN), released the world’s largest survey of travel intentions and global travel trends. The survey highlights valuable insights including the state of travel, consumers’ view of the industry and global insights by market.
Nearly half of consumers interviewed seek value-for-money or a relaxing experience when choosing their holiday. Additionally, domestic vacations are back on the rise in North America from 21% in 2021 to 24% in 2022. However, international travel has seen a few roadblocks, with vacations abroad only increasing from 7% to 8% in the same period.
Some 179,446 people in 28 countries, including all of North America, were surveyed by Global Web Index (GWI) during the first quarter of 2022. The survey was compiled for TLN by travel think tank Thrive and market intelligence firm AudienceNet.
“Interestingly, we saw the percentage of North Americans (49%) who have a high interest in traveling with a preference of domestic destinations over international currently aligns with the decreasing popularity of vacations abroad,” says David Zapata, CEO and founder of Zapwater Communications, which is the North American member of the Travel Lifestyle Network.
Country/rural escapes (33%), road trips (33%), and long weekend domestic getaways (32%) are the most likely travel to be booked in 2022 in the U.S.
North American airline ticket purchasing is showing signs of recovery with a +5% increase in 2022 thus far. Additionally, the top five North American airlines considered for both business and leisure flights are consistent across the two categories, with the difference emerging only in the order in which they are ranked. Currently, the top five airlines considered by business travelers are American Airlines (17%), Delta and United Airlines (tied at 15%), Southwest Airlines (11%) and JetBlue (8%). The top five airlines considered by leisure travelers are American Airlines and Delta (tied at 42%), followed by United Airlines (40%).
When consumers were asked what factors influenced their decision as to where they travelled, value for money emerged as the number one consideration (26%), followed by having a relaxing experience (21%); the weather/time of the year (20%); a cultural experience (15%); a once-in-a-lifetime experience (15%); being able to visit friends/family (13%); and good facilities for children/families (12%).
Another key takeaway from the survey are generational trends when it comes to purchasing vacations. Before the pandemic, this was relatively equal across Millennials, Gen X and Baby Boomers. However, 2022 shows that travel recovery is faster and more prominent amongst Millennials and Baby Boomers when compared with Gen X.
“In the context of the evolving cost-of-living crisis, with inflation rates soaring in many countries, the travel industry needs to contend with consumer concerns relating to the price of travel,” says Zapata. “With value for money the factor that has most impact on decisions about where to travel on vacation for just over a quarter (26%), affordability is likely to have a significant impact on travel-related purchasing in the second half of 2022 and into 2023.”
Overall, the survey discovered that wanderlust abounds with a strong desire to seize the experiences that travel offers in the post-COVID climate. Asked if they were “someone who likes to explore the world,” consumers were highly positive in all regions: Middle East and Africa (60%); North America (51%); Europe (49%); Asia-Pacific (44%); and Latin America (43%).
Survey respondents were asked what they had missed most during the pandemic and cited: exploring new places; a change of scenery; spending time with loved ones; relaxing or sunbathing; and eating different foods.
“Our report clearly shows how the rising cost of living is influencing every travel decision made today. This global survey highlights how an increasing number of consumers are seeking value-for-money when booking their leisure trip. Price, not necessarily quality, is going to be a key differentiator to attract consumer spend in the remainder of 2022 and in early 2023,” says Virginie Le Norgant, Travel Lifestyle Network President.
To receive the full TLN State of Travel Global Survey email firstname.lastname@example.org.