Single apps for all travel needs, passport free travel, and mobile app check-in are the top three ‘new travel norms’ expected by travelers in the next decade, according to new research by Agoda, the world’s fastest growing digital travel platform.
With the continued advancement of technology, revolutionary travel apps, and better connectivity, people expect a lot more from their travel experience in the next decade. Over half or almost half of respondents in Taiwan (50%) and in Southeast Asia: Indonesia (56%), Singapore (54%), Malaysia (53%), the Philippines (48%) and Thailand (48%) consider this the norm in the next decade. This compares to only a third of people in the United Kingdom and the United States (33%).
One in two Southeast Asians also view mobile app check-in—allowing guests to skip the registration queue, download their room access key, and go straight to their rooms—as the norm in the 2020s, with Singaporeans (54%), Filipinos (53%), Malaysians (58%) and Thais (49%) most expectant of this trend.
Meanwhile, Singapore (50%), Vietnam (47%), Philippines (45%), China (44%) and Australia (41%) are the top five origins most likely to see a future with passport-free travel. In the UK and US, they are less expectant of this advancement with only one in five expecting it to be the norm within the next decade.
Technology has already made such a positive impact on how and where people travel as innovative technologies, like those developed at Agoda, give travelers instant access to millions of hotels and home properties around the world with real time pricing and availability.
“It is a technology golden age for travelers, as technology is developed to simplify the way anyone, anywhere can search, book, and pay for flights, hotels, or holiday accommodation. The 2000s was defined by the mouse and the computer, putting online travel booking just a click away. The 2010s, was defined by the smart phone and app, and put a travel agent in the pocket of every phone owner, and the 2020s will be defined by the power of data and Machine Learning (AI). This will enable companies like Agoda to provide personalized, more relevant recommendations to make booking travel even easier,” explains Timothy Hughes, vice president of corporate development at Agoda.
“Asian travelers, in particular, are enthused by, and expectant of, technology developments that enhance and simplify their travel experience. Asian based companies are now leading the world in technology adoption and development to achieve this. I expect to see Asia press ahead with that lead in the 2020s—especially in areas such as video and augmented reality, improved mobile services with more chat and voice solutions, and payments to help bring the ‘unbanked’ online.”
Globally, people want to increase travel, but also to make eco-friendlier travel choices
Universally, people want to increase the amount of travel they undertake in the 2020s. Exploring more of their own country is cited by 40% of respondents globally, while international travel more often is anticipated at 35%.
What’s also interesting, in the context of global narratives on climate sustainability, is the trend that more than a quarter want to make more eco-friendly travel choices in the next decade. Travelers from Singapore, Thailand, and Indonesia are most keen to make eco-friendlier choices—perhaps more aware than others with the recent closure of Maya Bay in Thailand, and the Boracay rehabilitation program in Philippines—and thus, travelers want to do their bit even when on holiday.
Travelers in the 35-44 and 55+ age groups are most likely to want to explore their own countries and territories more (40% and 42% respectively), with those from China, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan, Thailand, US, and Vietnam choosing domestic destinations within their top three wishlist destinations for the coming decade.
Meanwhile, Korean and Japanese travelers see themselves taking more solo trips in the next decade. Taiwanese and Indonesians would prefer taking a sabbatical or gap year.
Kyoto scoops #1 spot as the world’s most desired destination to visit in the 20s
Asia dominates the global travel wishlists destination for the next decade, as travelers from both Asia and the West showcase a growing curiosity for Asian treasures like Kyoto (Japan) famed for its Shinto shrine, with its eclectic blend of culture, food, and history; followed by Bangkok (Thailand) and Bali (Indonesia).
Travelers in the Philippines, Thailand, Taiwan, Vietnam and Malaysia want to cross off their own capital cities from their travel lists. Meanwhile, South Korea, the UK, and Australian travelers are the only one who don’t choose a domestic destination on their wishlists for travel in the next decade.
American and British travelers alike are most excited about visiting New York in the coming decade, with New York also a top three choice for travelers from Australia, Japan, and South Korea. Both Malaysian and Indonesian travelers would like to visit Makkah by 2030.
Filipinos will continue to explore Asia in the next decade
Forty-five percent (45%) of travelers from the Philippines would like to explore more of their own country in the coming decade while 39% would like to travel more internationally. The capital city of Manila tops the wishlist for Filipino travelers in the 2020s, followed by Seoul (#2) and Kyoto (#3).
Fifty-three percent (53%) of Filipino travelers expect to check into hotels using their mobile phones as the norm while 48% expect to be able to use a single app for all their travel needs. 35% of travelers from the Philippines aim to make eco-friendlier travel choices in the next decade.