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Europ Assistance announced the international findings of their 21st edition of the Holiday Barometer. Travel expectations are increasing significantly compared to last year, with levels higher than in 2019. Overall, 69% of Thais intend to travel from June to September, which represents a 25pts increase compared to 2021.
Julia Ricks, Head of International Travel at Europ Assistance Group says “This year’s travel intentions reflect a real excitement for travel, overpassing pre-pandemics levels. Compared to 2021, we observe a significant return to international travel and higher average holiday budgets, supported by a significant decrease in covid-19 related issues that favors airplane trips and destinations like cities.”
“Ongoing inflation hasn’t stopped but contained this travel enthusiasm after two years of restrictions, but inflation is the most significant travel concern this year. Booking anticipations and the importance of being more covered with a trip insurance appears as new habits of holidaymakers that could become durable,” she added.
Holidaymakers report a higher travel budget this year than they did in 2021: Americans intend to spend an additional $440, for a global budget of around $2,760 (+19% vs 2021). In Europe, the expected holiday budget is around €1,800 (+220€, +14% vs 2021). And the holiday budget Thais intend to spend strongly increased vs 2021 by 18% (62,800 THB).
Concerns about inflation and prices increases are much present in peoples’ mind in 2022 and impact desire to travel this year: it is the case for 69% of Europeans, 62% of Americans, 70% of Canadians, 63% of Australians and 77% of Thais, who say being impacted by this issue. Moreover, financial considerations are mentioned as one of the main reasons not to travel by 41% of Europeans who won’t be going on a trip from June to September (+14pts vs 2021), 45% of Americans (+9pts) and 34% of Thais (+10pts).
Overall, the global level of concerns regarding all covid-19 related topics is decreasing compared to last year, especially on travel and leisure plans. For 53% of Europeans and 46% of Americans, COVID-19 has an impact on their enthusiasm regarding travel. It is still particularly high among the Canadians or the Aussies (60%) and even more among the Thai population (81%).
The boost of international travel
Above all, a return to international travel is observed in all the countries: 48% (+13pts) of Europeans, 36% (+11pts) of Americans and 56% (+7pts) of Thais intend to travel abroad from June to September. It is particularly the case in the countries where holidaymakers are more used to travel abroad: British (+24 pts), Swiss (+7pts) and Belgians (+7pts) will be less homey and will travel more internationally.
When choosing to travel abroad, Thai holidaymakers mostly opt for neighboring countries with favorite destinations being Japan followed by South Korea and Singapore. Weather and already knowing the destination are the most important criteria to choose the destination for Thai respondents. They also plan to choose their destination according to the health risk, inclusive of coronavirus infection.
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