Per the European Travel Commission’s (ETC) newest report on “Monitoring Sentiment for Domestic and Intra-European Travel- Wave 9,” which gives timely insights into Europeans short term travel intentions and preferences during the Covid-19 outbreak.
“Short-term excursions are more appealing to eager travellers”.
For the first time since October 2020, European travel plans are evenly distributed over the next six months, with 26% planning trips between December 2021 and January 2022, and 25% planning trips between February and March 2022. These findings suggest that an increasing number of Europeans are no longer in a “waiting mode” for travel and are far more willing to go on unplanned vacations.
As travel mood improves and pandemic limitations become new normal, Europeans are more motivated to stick to their vacation plans rather than delay or cancel.
European City breaks are a popular last-minute vacation option:
Intra- European vacations are now at the forefront, demonstrating increased comfort with international travel: more than one in every two Europeans with short-term travel visit other European countries, a 41% increase since September 2020. Mediterranean locations are the most popular on traveller’s wish list with Spain and Italy (both 9%), France (8%), and Greece (7%) ranking first.
The desire for city breaks (18%) has already reached a peak for 2021, with a 43% increase since summer 2021, yet the allure of a beach vacation remains strong. At the same time, trip planning is growing increasingly last-minute, with just 29% of Europeans who want to travel in October or November having fully booked their trip. This decreases much lower, to 15% among those travelling later in 2021. Increased interest in city breaks and last-minute reservations is another sign of a gradual return to normalcy and a shift toward more spontaneous vacations near future.
“Though health and safety issues continue, there is a growing preference for air travel”
Despite some reservations about flying, more than half of ‘travel-ready Europeans are willing to make the transition. This is another indication of increased customer trust in using commercial aeroplanes to shorten travel times.