The travel sector’s renaissance: 63% of UK travellers planning a holiday abroad

‘Brands should take note and offer flexibility’ as new data shows a clear appetite for holidays, but travellers remain cautious.

After a hard hit from the pandemic, 63% of UK travellers are planning an overseas holiday in the next 12 months and 82% say a domestic trip is on the cards. 

The promising data is revealed in GWI’s newly-launched Travel data set, covering 10 key travel markets, including the US, UK, Singapore and China.

However, consumers are airing on the side of caution post-pandemic, with over half (54%) of UK holidaymakers saying being able to cancel or rebook a holiday for free is the most important factor when choosing their next trip.

“Brands should take note and offer flexibility while also demonstrating the overall value of what they’re offering,” advised Jason Mander, Chief Research Officer at GWI.

At the same time, the cost of living crisis and worries about an incoming recession are also impacting attitudes to travel, with July 2022 GWI Zeitgeist data showing that 24% of UK consumers are price-conscious about their vacations. 

Travellers take to social media for holiday research

Social media, word of mouth and reviews are playing a key role in the research process for consumers to ensure they get the best holiday for their money, said the data.

Travellers are also turning towards their peers when it comes to planning holidays, with around a third of UK holiday-makers saying they lean on in-person conversations with friends and family to make their decisions, ahead of travel provider sites, price comparison websites and travel agents. 

For Gen Z however, social media plays a bigger role in influencing destination decisions, with Gen Z travellers 44% more likely than other generations globally to say social media influences their thoughts about where to travel to. 

Generation gap in travelling

Value-for-money is more important to baby boomers globally, with 57% highlighting this as a key factor for them. Millennials are open to paying more for flights and travel overall to improve their experience. 

Millennials globally are also far more likely to go overseas for their holidays, with three quarters saying they plan to travel abroad over the next 12 months. This is no surprise when considering that UK millennials are the generation to say that holidays are very or extremely important to them (39%). 

CEO and Founder of GWI, Tom Smith, said: “While many people have jumped back into travelling after the disruption of the past couple of years, the ways in which we now live and work post-pandemic are heavily impacting the expectations of consumers.” 

GWI Travel has been launched in response to major changes in the travel industry, said the audience insights platform, providing a view of every stage of the purchase journey, from inspiration to reviews.