Group joins Google to launch Travel Trends Report

Drawing on various indicators, including analysis of search query statistics from Google Trends, a pilot survey carried out in the Asia-Pacific region, and businesses insights data from Group, the report provides a detailed snapshot of how consumers are responding to the evolving dynamics within the travel industry, as well as the expected trends for travel over the coming months.

Coinciding with the gradual resumption of travel and alleviation of restrictions in numerous markets, the report indicates that interest in travel, specifically short-haul travel, is on the rise. According to the report, among those considering travel plans, around 30% would like to take a trip within the next three months.

The report’s findings also strongly indicate that domestic and regional travel will be the first sector to experience a rebound, with short-haul products accounting for over 70% of searches made for customers in the Asia-Pacific region.

On the basis of data for the region, the report identifies the top 20 short-haul destinations for upcoming trips as: Bangkok, Seoul, Shanghai, Jeju-do, Tokyo, Bali, Manila, Busan, Xi’an, Kuala Lumpur, Osaka, Penang, Da Nang, Bintan, Taipei, Singapore, Pattaya, Hong Kong, Phuket and Macau.

Looking further into the future, the report anticipates that as conditions improve, the top 20 destinations in the next phase will be: Japan, Thailand,  Hong Kong, the USA, South Korea, Macau, Taiwan, the UK, Australia, Canada, Singapore, Malaysia, Cambodia, Vietnam, Indonesia, France, Germany, the UAE, the Philippines and the Maldives.

Speaking at the launch event, Google China Head of Industry (Online Travel Agencies) Wilson Wu noted that the report also identifies important trends for the industry to take note of, as businesses make preparations for a resurgence in travel demand and adapt to changed customer expectations.

“With the onset of the pandemic the entire world is facing an unprecedented level of uncertainty. The normal dynamics of the travel business have been completed up-ended, and this is definitely not an easy time for many of us,” said Wu. “But even in the middle of this global crisis, there are opportunities to bounce back and innovate towards the new normal.”

According to the report’s findings, in light of the uncertainties experienced over the past few months, customers identified flexibility as their most important consideration, with 57% of customers nominating penalty-free cancellation policies as the most attractive feature when booking travel. In addition to flexibility, 27% of customers identified advance booking promotions as their key motivator for booking travel, while 25% preferred insurance coverage.

“Now is the time to capture recovery demand,” said Wu. “Travel providers must respond with products and services that allow flexibility.”

As part of its recently launched “Travel On” initiative, Group has responded to the findings of the report with the introduction of flexible booking types, significant discounts for advance bookings and standardised safety guarantees. With these measures in place to rebuild traveller confidence, the leading travel services provider anticipates a rebound for travel over the coming months.

“We can’t wait to start travelling again, and exploring the wonders of the world, and what the world needs most right now is the freedom to travel on safely,” said Group CEO Jane Sun. “With the measures for safety and flexibility we’ve announced, and these amazing deals and exciting new products on offer, that moment is now. It’s time to travel on.”

About Group: Group is a leading one-stop travel service provider comprising of, Ctrip, Skyscanner, and Qunar. Across its platforms, Group enables local partners and travelers around the world to make informed and cost-effective bookings for travel products and services, through the aggregation of comprehensive travel related information and resources, and an advanced transaction platform consisting of mobile apps, Internet websites and 24/7 customer service centers. Founded in 1999 and listed on NASDAQ in 2003, Group has become one of the best-known travel brands in the world, with the mission of ‘making every trip the perfect trip’.


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