Data-driven destinations. eDreams ODIGEO, the world’s leading travel subscription platform and one of Europe’s largest e-commerce businesses, has launched its ‘Year in Travel’ report with some fascinating results
Travel is showing no signs of slowing down. eDreams ODIGEO’s report analyses searches and booking data from its customers in all key European markets* and the USA, to reveal the evolution of travel, including top destinations, booking habits, growth destinations and a foretaste of what we might expect for the year ahead.
The world’s leading travel subscription platform, eDreams ODIGEO is one of the largest e-commerce businesses in Europe. Under its four renowned online travel agency brands – eDreams, GO Voyages, Opodo, Travellink, and the metasearch engine Liligo – it serves more than 20 million customers per year across 44 markets. Here’s what the brand has unveiled for 2023 when it comes to suitcase-inspired searches:
Top 2023 Destinations
London came third as the most popular booked destination globally, behind Paris in 1st place and Barcelona in 2nd.
London was the 2nd most popular booked destination for Germans, the 3rd most popular booked destination for Portuguese and 6th on the list for departures from Spain. For in-coming arrival by air to the UK during 2023, the largest percentage were from Spain (19%), followed by Germany (12%) and Italy (11%). French arrivals made up 10%.
British travellers instead had their sights on Dublin as the most popular booked destination and all top destinations were short-haul, reflecting the overall picture of the distance Brits travelled during 2023: 76% continental, 15% intercontinental and 9% domestic.
Top 2023 Searches
London pipped Paris to the post as the most popular destination for flight searches from all markets globally during 2023 – followed by Paris, New York City, Bangkok and Barcelona.
During 2023 UK traveller search activity reflected our short-haul booking habits with Paris, Amsterdam, Barcelona, and London all in the top 5. Searches for Dubai ranked 4th, Bangkok ranked 7th and New York City came in 9th place for UK traveller searches.
2023 Growth Destinations
Opodo’s data further reveals that top growth destinations across all markets in 2023 compared to the previous year are Bilbao (+54%), Bangkok (+49%), Las Vegas (+28%), Casablanca (+27%) and New York City (+23%). (see Table 3).
For UK travellers only, top growth destinations were Nice (+38%), Edinburgh (+27%), Amsterdam (+14%), Dusseldorf (+10%) and Frankfurt (+9%).
● The largest percentage – 34% – of global travel was for just 3-4 days. Almost a quarter (24%) stayed for between 7 and 13 days while just 7% of bookings were for journeys lasting 14-20 days or for those lasting three weeks or more.
● 44% of all bookings globally were made relatively last minute during 2023: within 2 weeks or less of departure. Just a fifth (19%) of all bookings are made more than 61 days before travel.
● Solo travel continues to trend. A new eDreams ODIGEO poll* of 10,000 people (launched September 2023) revealed that ‘being in control of decision making’ remained the primary motivator (41%). But while women increasingly report that they are motivated to travel alone for ‘self discovery’ (34%), the majority of men (31%) report heading off alone in order to ‘meet new people’.
Anxiety about safety has diminished significantly: by 24% compared to a similar poll in 2019**. Finally, although it is often suggested that travellers are most likely to consider solo travel to make a ‘wish list’ trip, eDreams’ new poll revealed that beach holidays and culture trips appeal most highly across all age groups (36%).
● Wellness has emerged as one of the hottest new travel trends globally, whether to escape screens or embrace exercise. eDreams ODIGEO’s recent poll*** revealed that 63% of global travellers believe that travel has a positive impact on their mental health and 42% report the importance of ‘relaxing or doing nothing’ while travelling – though 24% of all respondents in the youngest age group (18-24) reported that adventurous activities were most effective for their mental wellbeing.
● Social Media is increasingly influencing destination choices as users of Instagram and – especially – TikTok give a new generation of travellers a glimpse of what locations have to offer. TikTok is predicted to become the most influential social media platform for travellers. With up-to-the minute news and inspiration, social media is making the world more accessible, providing guidance on budgets, safety, don’t-miss sites and hidden gems through influencers trusted by their followers to understand the nuances of their dreams.
● According to recent reports, travel Set-jetting has inspired a record number of visitors across the globe from the jungles of Peru to the Northern Irish countryside as TV and film take over the role of the travel agent. eDreams ODIGEO’s data revealed in increase in set-jetting following the 2023 Oscars: after the Fabelmans launch for example it revealed a 110% increase in bookings from Italians travelling to Los Angeles, and following the release of Tár in the UK, bookings to NYC bounced up 228% compared to the same period in the previous year.
Opodo’s data reveals that for bookings made already by global travellers, Paris again takes the No1 spot – with the summer Olympics likely to boost interest further – with London in 2nd place, followed by Bangkok, Barcelona, Rome and Madrid (see table 4). For global flight searches for travel in 2024, London takes third place, just behind Bangkok and Tokyo and ahead of Paris, New York City and Denpasar.
The year ahead is packed with major international sporting events – including the Olympics, the Paralympics, Grand Prix, the Euros and the T20 cricket and eDreams ODIGEO’s data shows where interest is already heating up.
Global searches for travel to Paris during the Olympics in 2024 vs the same dates in 2023 are up by +41%. 2024 will be the 20th anniversary of Bahrain’s Grand Prix and global travel searches for the weekend of 2 March are up +183% compared to last year. Interest in travel to Germany during