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WTTC and Trip.com launch Trending in Travel report

Findings focus on shifts in booking trends and consumer profiles in the wake of Covid-19

The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) and Trip.com Group have published a report that provides an outlook on shifts in traveller behaviour and future booking trends.

The latest projections from the WTTC show strong growth in international spending for 2022 and beyond. Following a 70% decline in 2020, global international spending is set to rise by 9% in 2021 and significantly by 94% in 2022.

The Trending in Travel report also reveals how strict and inconsistent travel restrictions around the world have resulted in a significant rise in domestic tourism. Domestic hotel bookings have surged by more than 200% on Trip.com’s platform this year compared with 2019, with half of global travellers planning to travel domestically in the next 12 months.

The findings illustrate how Covid-19 has shaped travel trends – from younger generations being the first to return to travel, to increased demand for longer stays, the importance of fee-free cancellations and enhanced health and safety protocols.

Ongoing travel restrictions in some leading destinations have also meant that travellers are increasingly visiting ‘secondary’ destinations. According to Trip.com’s hotel booking data, Abu Dhabi (UAE), Chiang Mai (Thailand), Doha (Qatar), Florence (Italy) and Frankfurt (Germany) have experienced a surge in popularity this year.

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The pause in travel has also heightened consumers’ eagerness to travel more sustainably with 83% of global travellers saying they would make sustainable travel a priority in the future. Highlighting sustainable travel as a long-term trend, the report shows that 68 million travellers have opted to book a ‘Greener Choice’ labelled flight on Skyscanner since its launch in 2019.

Commenting on the findings, WTTC president & CEO Julia Simpson said: “It is clear that the wanderlust for travel remains. After almost two years without being able to travel freely, consumers are eager to explore, but they are aware of the impact their travel habits have on the world, and their preferences, needs and demands have changed.

“As the travel and tourism sector adapts to these emerging trends, sustainability must remain front and centre of everything we do.”

Trip.com Group CEO Jane Sun added: “Travellers around the world have shown their eagerness to travel, whether limited to domestic travel or able to cross borders. We see a huge amount of pent-up demand steadily being released.

“To better evolve with the recovery we must understand travellers, and as an industry adapt to emerging trends.”

 For more information and to read the full report, visit Trending in Travel 

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