Survey shows a shift in travel priorities

SINGAPORE, 8 January 2021: Spending more quality time with loved ones, being able to travel unhindered and doing things that matter or make a difference are the top sentiments expressed in Agoda’s ‘What Matters 2021’ survey.

Respondents surveyed across all markets are most looking forward to the same three things, with one in three looking forward to spending more quality time with loved ones.

Respondents 55 and above were most looking forward to travelling unhindered. Those between ages 25 to 54 were keen to spend quality time with family and friends, and young travellers (18 to 24) were most excited about making a difference in 2021.

The top things respondents are most committed to are travelling more with friends and family in 2021, taking more spontaneous trips as well as making more eco-friendly travel choices.

“2020 was a year of survival and of making the best of it. Despite all that struggle and hardship, our research shows that there’s a global desire for travel, connection, meaning and spending time with friends and family. Travel will resume eventually, because, ultimately, the human desire to travel is unstoppable,” said Agoda vice president of corporate development, Tim Hughes.

“At Agoda, we believe in the future of travel. Our research backs this up, confirming that travel is one of the top things people look forward to in 2021. More than that – people are committed to making a difference, travelling with people who matter, open to more unplanned, last-minute trips, and considering the environmental impact they make as they travel.”

Top-of-mind topics

Spending more quality time with loved ones is what most people from the United Kingdom (UK) and Thailand, the United States (US), the Philippines, Malaysia and China are most looking forward to in 2021.

Being able to travel unhindered is the priority for Singaporeans, South Koreans and Japanese.

Doing things that matter or make a difference tops the list for Indonesians, Taiwanese, and Vietnamese.

Getting closer to nature and the great outdoors is second on the list for Thais, and third for Japanese.

Fewer are looking forward to going back to the workplace in 2021. Respondents from China (1.2%), Japan (1.5%) and UK (2%) have the smallest proportion that is looking forward to being done with remote working, while Filipinos (9%), Vietnamese (7%) and Indonesians (7%) are more likely to look forward to returning to the office.

Attending live, sporting or large-scale events is second least popular on the list, but those from the US (8%), UK (8%) and Japan (7%) are more likely to look forward to that.

Age group data

Spending more quality time with loved ones is the top thing to look forward to for age groups 25-34, 35 – 44 and 45 – 54, while those aged 18-24 are most looking forward to doing things that matter, and respondents 55 and above are most looking forward to “being able to travel unhindered”.

Getting closer to nature and the great outdoors is the third most popular thing respondents 55 and above were looking forward to.

Top travel commitments:

Travelling more with loved ones is the top sentiment in all markets in 2021, with the exception of United Kingdom (UK) and Taiwan, where respondents are embracing the adventure and committing to taking more spontaneous trips, Japanese

top the sentiment list for travelling at a slower pace which is the second most popular commitment for Singaporeans and Malaysians.

Vietnamese, South Koreans, Filipinos, Thais and Indonesians are more likely to commit to travelling sustainably. Commitment to making more eco-friendly travel choices comes in second for these markets.

Indonesians (16%), Thais (14%) and Japanese (13%) commit to consciously support less touristy destinations in the new year.

Age Group Data

Travelling more with loved ones is the top 2021 commitment across all age groups.

Those in age groups 25-34, 35-44, 45-54 are likely to commit to more eco-friendly travel choices, which stood as their second top commitment for the new year. Travelling at a slower pace is second for those 55 and above.

Taking more spontaneous trips is the third most popular choice across all age groups (24-34, 35-44, 45-54, 55+) except for those between ages 18 – 24 which was second among their commitments, and fourth most popular choice for 45-54 age group.

Source: Agoda

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