Will the travel market ever return to normal? Unlikely we think, but the UK consumer still wants to escape the rain and winter gloom here, so there is always demand for travel insurance. Especially cover that includes pandemics, lockdowns, repatriation and out of pocket extra expenses, like a 14 day quarantine and loss of earnings.
Brokers should note that even in winter many are planning to travel by car, rather than trust airlines or train operators, so there is an opportunity to upsell on travel insurance, legal expenses, breakdown repatriation etc.
Europ Assistance has released their Future of Travel Survey. During the months of May and June Ipsos surveyed 11,000 travellers across 11 countries around the world on their preferences for travel this autumn and winter. The key findings from their survey are highlighted below:
• 27 percent of all global travellers said they would take a short, 2- to 4-day leisure trip in the summer. However, the number of respondents who said they would take a short trip in the autumn increased by 5 points (32 percent) and continued to increase when asked about the average trip duration they were considering in the winter (41 percent).
• On the contrary, 70 percent of all global travellers said they would take at least one-week long leisure trip in the summer, while the number of respondents who said they would take a long trip in the autumn and winter decreased by 5 points (65 percent) and 15 points (55 percent) respectively.
• Hotels remain the most popular accommodation type and are increasingly being chosen over time. 43 percent of all global travellers said they would stay at a hotel this summer.
• However, the number of respondents who said they would choose a hotel in the autumn increased by 12 points (55 percent) and continued to increase when asked what type of housing they would choose in the winter (59 percent).
• Cars are preferred over plane and train this autumn and winter, but the plane is increasingly being chosen over time. The number of travellers who indicated they would take a car to their trip in the autumn (58 percent) decreased and continued to decrease when travellers were asked what their preferred mode of transport would be in the winter (56 percent) and in 2021 (51 percent).
• 20 percent of all global travellers said they would take a plane in the summer. However, the number of respondents who said they would take in plane in the autumn increased by 13 points (33 percent) and continued to increase when asked what mode of transport they would take in the winter (37 percent) with more than double saying they would travel via plane for their main trip in 2021 (44 percent).
• Domestic trips are widely preferred this autumn and winter. Some 52 percent of all global travellers surveyed planned to trip domestically, 30 percent of them planned to trip inside the mainland (Europe for the Europeans, Asia for the Asians, America for the Americans respectively), while only 14 percent planned to trip outside the mainland.
• For the winter, 54 percent of all global travellers surveyed planned to trip domestically, 24 percent of them planned to trip inside the mainland, while only 14 percent planned to travel outside the mainland. However, people intend to go abroad more and more over time, with 19% of the respondents saying they plan to trip outside the mainland in 2021.
• Despite a great desire to travel, a high level of uncertainty remains regarding winter trips: many respondents don’t know if they are going to book a trip this autumn and winter, or hadn’t booked anything yet when surveyed earlier this year.
• According to the survey results, only 13 percent and 8 percent of the respondents have booked travels for the autumn and winter respectively, and only 20 percent and 19 percent of the respondents intend to make any travel reservations for these two seasons respectively.
Online survey conducted by Ipsos at the request of Europ Assistance among 11,000 individuals (nationally representative samples of 1,000 people per country) in Europe (France, Germany, Austria, Belgium, Spain, Italy, Poland and the UK), in Asia (China and Thailand) and in the USA. This survey is an updated version of the annual Europ Assistance & Ipsos Holiday Barometer, which was getting underway when the general lock-down began. The goal of this survey is to ascertain how the Covid-19 epidemic has altered holidaymakers’ travel plans and aspirations, in order to assist the various players in the tourism sector in preparing for the “post-Covid world”.