A survey conducted jointly by the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) and Trip.com Group has revealed that global travellers are moving rapidly towards sustainable tourism. In a report, prepared by the two organisation, along with consultancy firm
Deloitte, the organisations say that there is a heightened appetite for sustainable tourism amongst consumers, with 69 pc of travellers actively seeking sustainable travel options.
According to a survey included in the report, over 75 pc of travellers are considering travelling more sustainably in the future and nearly 60 pc have already chosen more sustainable travel options in the last couple of years.
In a press statement, WTTC says that it joined hands with leading global travel service provider, Trip.com Group and its major consumer brands Trip.com, Ctrip and Skyscanner, with additional data sourced from Deloitte, to analyse the trends that shaped the Travel & Tourism sector last year and will continue to do so over 2023.
The statement adds that the report, A world in motion: Shifting consumer travel trends in 2022 and beyond, shows that sustainability is a key element of the travel agenda, with travellers eager to reduce their carbon footprint and support sustainable tourism.
Another survey also found that around three quarters of high-end travellers are willing to pay extra to make their trips more sustainable.
The report says that in 2022, after over two years of travel disruption, travellers made clear their wanderlust is very much alive, with a 109 pc increase of international overnight arrivals, compared to 2021.
According to the report, last year consumers were willing to stretch their budget for their holiday plans, with 86 pc of travellers planning on spending the same amount or more on international travel than in 20193, with US tourists leading the list as big spenders.
The statement says that the findings predict that 2023 is looking even better in terms of travellers’ spend. Despite concerns about inflation and the cost-of-living crisis around the world, nearly a third or 31 pc of travellers said they intend to spend more on international travel this year than in 2022.
Additionally, according to Deloitte’s Global State of the Consumer Tracker, last year more than half or 53 pc of global consumers surveyed during the summer said they plan to stay in a hotel over the following three months.
“The demand for travel is now stronger than ever and our report shows that this year we will see a significant bounce back. 2023 is set to be a very strong year for Travel & Tourism. Sustainability is top of travellers’ agenda, and consumers highlight the value they put on protecting nature and travelling responsibly,” says Julia Simpson, WTTC President & CEO.
“Travel & Tourism is a powerful force in driving the global economy, creating jobs, stimulating economic growth, and lifting communities out of poverty. The Asia-Pacific Region, with its rapidly growing middle-class and dynamic economies, is well-positioned to capitalise on the growth of the industry and take its place as a leader in the global tourism economy,” says Jane Sun, Trip.com Group CEO.
“I’m optimistic about the positive momentum for the global resumption and growth of travel in 2023, primarily driven by mainland Chinese consumers, which will help accelerate worldwide recovery and development,” adds Sun.
“Travel is rebounding from the pandemic while innovating and meeting the demands of more modern alternative travel-types, sustainable travel, luxury travel, and much more. Even the rise in inflation-driven financial concerns is not slowing the pace; incredibly travel is being prioritized and flexible/remote work arrangements are creating new opportunities. We are actively engaging with our clients as they embrace these new trends and create memorable experiences for consumers,” says Scott Rosenberger, Deloitte Global Transportation, Hospitality & Services Sector Leader.
The report also says that in 2022 travellers sought out sunny and beach destinations in a great number as the sun and sea package holiday sales were estimated to be up 75 pc compared to the previous year. It adds that in 2022, during the summer, international arrivals in European sun and beach destinations were just 15 pc below 2019 levels.
According to WTTC’s recent Cities Economic Impact Research, in 2022 visits to major cities are expected to see a 58 pc year-on-year increase, less than 14 pc below 2019 levels. It adds that luxury holidays will prove particularly popular, with sales of luxury hotels expected to reach USD 92 billion by 2025, as against USD 76 billion in 2019.
The report also adds that nearly 60 pc of travellers said they were either already paying to offset their carbon emissions or considering it if the price was right.