Sojern, the world’s leading traveler audience engagement platform that delivered $3B in direct booking revenue for travel companies last year, today released its Q1 Global Travel Insights report. The report uncovers emerging travel patterns and destinations for spring travel around the world and arms travel marketers with insights on how to tailor more effective consumer messages to drive bookings for a specific travel window.
Sojern’s quarterly reports are based on travel intent data from 350 million traveler profiles, across 100,000 unique audience segments and billions of travel intent signals, including search and booking data from online and mobile channels.
Spring Break Hot Spots Beginning to Emerge
Beach destinations dominate the spring travel scene for North Americans. The top searched beach destinations include: Miami, Cancun, Honolulu, Fort Myers and San Juan.
Latin American travelers are also interested in the beaches of Miami and Cancun, but given their easier access to other destinations and their diverse cultural ties, they’re also looking for different beach getaways: Barcelona, Rio de Janeiro and Havana rounded up the top five.
For Europe, Spain dominates beach searches: Barcelona, Palma de Mallorca, Malaga, and Alicante all make the top five searched beach destinations. The only non-Spanish beach destination on the list is, surprisingly, not nearby Greece, but Miami, an ocean away – a piece of good news for Florida travel marketers.
Easter Travel Planning is Already Underway in Latin America, Europe and Asia
By looking at early searches for spring travel, Sojern was able to see the decision-making process for many travelers in countries with public holidays around Good Friday.
Latin American travelers are looking at extended Easter celebrations: Semana Santa—or Holy Week—is a big travel time for many on the continent. The top departure dates searched are in the week before Easter and the week of Easter, with April 1 as the top searched departure day.
In Europe, the top searched departure dates in April are 1,8, and 14. Travelers in countries like Spain, Germany and the United Kingdom have Good Friday off and are looking to take advantage of the three or even four day weekend.
We see similar travel planning occur on the other side of the globe, in Asia-Pacific. Countries like Singapore, the Philippines and Hong Kong also observe Good Friday as a public holiday. With the Friday off, we see the 13, the Thursday before Easter, as one of the most popular dates searched for departures in the region, along with April 1 and 29. Overall, Asia-Pacific travelers are looking to leave earlier than their European counterparts.
Q4 2016: Top Destinations Shifted, Share of Searches and Bookings Were Uneven
Looking back at the last quarter of 2016, with the exception of Middle East and Africa, Sojern noted an increase in the share of family travel ( 3+ travelers), not surprising given the winter holidays. The report also shows a number of shifts in the top outbound destinations: Palma De Mallorca fell out of the top five destinations for Europeans, replaced by Amsterdam. For Asian travelers, London, which was in the top five destinations searched last quarter, was replaced by Taipei in Q4.
Another shift in Q4 took place in the share of search and bookings: Generally, the share of booking and searching is spread evenly across each month, with only a percentage difference. This was not the case for Q4. Instead, we saw October dominate in bookings, November see the most searches, and both search and bookings level out in December.