A research conducted by Hilton, UAE reveals that residents are gearing up for a busy year of travel in 2021. The survey is a part of Hilton’s recently launched campaign- “To New Memories”. Over 1000 people of various nationalities across the UAE participated in the survey.
More Than 80% Of Residents Yearned For Travel Experiences
More than half of them are planning three or more holidays next year, if global travel advice allows. Most residents had to cancel their holidays due to the pandemic and wanted to revisit treasured destinations with their families.
Over 80% of residents yearned to create new memories through travel. In addition, they also said that some of their best memories were made from going away on holiday.
90% Residents Had To Cancel Holiday Plans
The sweeping impact of COVID-19 on leisure travel was clearly reflected in the survey. Almost 90% respondents cancelled least one overseas holiday this year. In addition, a few of them also had to cancel holidays within the Middle East and North Africa region. 84% said they miss the chance to create new memories on holiday. The results also highlighted the importance the hospitality industry added to the overall holiday experience.
99% Emiratis Missed Making Memories With Families
99% of Emirati respondents felt strongly about missing out on making memories with their families when staying at hotels. 80% said hotel stay was an essential part of the vacationing experience and creating wonderful memories with loved ones. In terms of the top holiday destinations, 34% said they will travel to their home country, while 26% of respondents preferred Europe. Among UAE Nationals, 44% preferred Europe followed by the 33% opting the Far East.
Other Findings Revealed In The Survey
34% Prefer To Travel For Wellness Experiences
The survey also shed light on how future holidaying priorities have been affected by the pandemic, particularly when it comes to the type of holiday people are seeking.
Nearly 65% of respondents said the pandemic has changed their priorities for leisure travel. More than 34% travellers are now looking for experiences that focus on wellness, 16% opting for nature and adventure and 15% preferring resort-type experiences.
Jochem-Jan Sleiffer, President, Middle East, Africa and Turkey, Hilton, said: “Our survey shows that the UAE’s passionate travellers are longing to discover places they have had on their bucket-list or revisit the destinations they have already fallen in love with to create memorable moments together again. It also demonstrates the hospitality industry’s crucial role in shaping people’s travel experiences.”
Emirati Respondents Posted Less On Social Media
Another interesting trend reflected through the results was that nearly all Emirati respondents posted less on social media whilst travelling this summer. In fact, nearly 61% of all survey takers agreed, the main reason being that they wanted to spend more time making travel memories with family and friends instead of spending time on social platforms.
Nevertheless, social media continued to be a popular way to reminisce the good times, with exactly half of respondents saying they posted ‘throwback’ holiday pictures to cheer themselves up when they were not able to venture abroad.
Staycations Are The New Travel Trend
Although international travel has slowed down, staycations across the Emirates have become increasingly popular. The sought-after staycation was the most common type of holiday in 2020. 43% of respondents took an extended trip or weekend away in the UAE. More than 53% of respondents say they will book more staycations even as global travel restrictions ease, either every month or every quarter.