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Survey: 7 in 10 Singaporeans still want to travel in 2020

YouTrip Travel Intent Survey

Singapore — YouTrip conducted the Travel Intent Survey 2020 to analyze post-COVID-19 travel intentions of 6,000 Singaporeans. The survey aimed to understand the outlook of travel recovery and changes to travel behaviors of Singaporeans as a result of the pandemic.

First Travel Destination

With less than 6 months till the end of the year, slightly more than half of the respondents (54%) indicated that they’ll be traveling in 2020 as soon as travel restrictions lift. Another 20% of Singaporeans would be enticed to travel in 2020 if there’s an attractive promotion, suggesting that both border restrictions and prices spur travel recovery. Among Singaporeans with immediate travel intentions within 2020, millennial travelers aged 25 to 34 years old are the most adventurous (35%). Comparatively, only 22% of travelers aged 35 to 44 years and 11% of travelers aged 55 to 64 years old expect to travel within the year.

Caecilia Chu, Co-Founder and CEO of YouTrip said: “It’s encouraging to see signs of travel recovering after months of pent up demand. Within our community of users, many of them are avid travelers who I believe will be amongst the first movers for the initial travel recovery.”

Caecilia Chu, Co-Founder and CEO of YouTrip
Caecilia Chu, Co-Founder and CEO of YouTrip

Popular countries like Japan (23%), Thailand (12%), and Malaysia (11%) remain top choices for Singaporeans, followed by Australia (8%), South Korea (7%), Taiwan (6%), Mainland China (5%), New Zealand (4%), Indonesia (4%), and Vietnam (2%). As for COVID-19 hotspot countries, 25% more Singaporeans are willing to travel there in the first half of 2021 (40%) as compared to 2020 (15%), signaling a gradual recovery of tourism in the most affected countries.

The New-Normal in Travelling

As an indicator of the pent up demand for travel, 85% of Singaporeans are prepared to spend more on their next holiday. 4 in 10 Singaporeans are willing to budget 30% or more for their upcoming travel plans as a way to compensate previously canceled plans.

The Chief Economist from the International Air Transport Association (IATA), Brian Pearce estimates that flight tickets will cost 43% to 54% higher than previous prices due to in-flight social distancing policies. Even though Singaporeans have expressed their enthusiasm for their next holiday, most of them are value-driven when it comes to transport expenses. 72% of respondents said they will be deterred by higher flight ticket prices and would wait for promotional prices before making their travel plans.

This is echoed in 58% of respondents stating that promotional prices will entice them to resume traveling in 2020, further suggesting that Singaporeans are value-driven. “Pay Now, Travel Later” promotions seem to be a viable option for Singaporeans, with more than 70% indicating that they will be keen to purchase if the discounts are at least half-priced or more. Other factors that could influence their purchase include the flexibility of stay and eligibility for full refunds.

“We’re taking the time to anticipate and understand the new-normal of travel, and the different ways it’ll impact travelers. With this understanding, YouTrip will be ready to better serve our users’ needs once travel resumes,” Caecilia adds.

Alternatives to Travel Plans

In view of canceled travel plans in 2020, 28% of respondents stated that they’ll be saving the money instead. Local staycation (15%), shopping (14%), and visiting local tourist attractions (5%) are amongst alternative options for Singaporeans.

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