HomeToGo, the largest holiday rentals search engine in the world, has published its ‘Return of Travel’ study, reporting on a shift in travel behaviours as the ‘new normal’ takes shape and travel begins to bounce back.
With the vaccine rollout in full swing, Brits are eager to travel, according to HomeToGo’s study. The survey revealed that, in comparison to the pre-pandemic period, 58% of UK travellers plan to take the same amount of or more holidays in 2021, with over a quarter planning to spend more on each trip.
“Following a tough year spent mostly at home, our data shows that travellers desperately want to get away and enjoy a much-needed break from it all, with more than half of survey participants choosing a relaxing beach holiday as their first choice of trip post-lockdown,” said Mahendra Roopa, HomeToGo’s director of product, machine learning and data science. “We’re also seeing an upward trend when it comes to two-person trips this summer, as travellers polled in our Return of Travel survey expressed more desire to travel with their partner compared to pre-pandemic.”
Based on a survey of UK travellers and an analysis of HomeToGo’s internal search data, the ‘Return of Travel’ study uncovered that:
- Lack of free cancellation is a deal breaker: 35% of survey respondents ranked “Free Cancellation” as the top consideration when booking overnight accommodation, prioritised over other aspects such as spa amenities and pet-friendliness.
- Beach holidays top the post-lockdown wishlist: 51% of participants said that beach breaks are their first choice of trip for post-lockdown travels, with holidays involving wildlife experiences and cultural activities ranking second and third respectively.
- Travellers are unlocking love after lockdown: 75% of respondents said their partner would be their most preferred travel companion for their next holiday, with a third expressing more desire to travel with their partner compared to pre-pandemic.
- The desire to disconnect is shaping travel trends: After over a year of remote working, holidaymakers are looking to recharge. Half of those surveyed said that they won’t be bringing work along on trips during 2021, with more than a quarter of participants planning to be stricter about staying work-free while travelling in future.
“Travelling to new places has the amazing ability to bring us happiness – in fact, 96% of British travellers surveyed feel travel improves their mental health,” added Caroline Burns, head of PR and travel expert at HomeTogo.