Travel might be on pause in these unprecedented times, but data from Booking.com reveals that this hasn’t stopped people across the city from dreaming about its possibilities. Delving into the millions of travel wish lists created by hopeful travelers on its platform over the last two months, with properties wish listed across over 100,000 different destinations since the start of March, Booking.com shares the top destinations and properties on peoples’ minds as they wait for when the time is right to travel again.
While international destinations like Bali, Andalusia, London, Florida and Paris continue to inspire travel dreams for people across the world, it’s no surprise that Hong Kongers are starting to think about travelling again.
When it comes to international adventures featuring most heavily in Hong Kongers’ travel dreams, sensational cities with shopping havens, scrumptious food and exotic night markets dominate wish lists. Bangkok (Thailand) tops the list, followed by Tokyo (Japan), London (UK), Taipei (Taiwan) and Osaka (Japan), while Kyoto (Japan), Singapore and Macau also appear strongly top of mind. This suggests that Hong Kongers are highly interested in metropolitan destinations, where life is always fast paced and convenient. Several top endorsements for Bangkok by travelers from Hong Kong are for spicy food, night markets and street food, whereas for Tokyo, Hong Kongers endorsed Japanese specialties like sushi, ramen, and the fish market; for London, however, sightseeing dominates the list – with musicals, Chinatown, and the theatre being popular endorsements.
Hong Kongers tend to endorse their hometown for shopping, food (dim sum!) and sightseeing, which suggests that they try to locate these interests while they travel, in order to maintain familiarity with home.
Similarly, when looking at the international countries featuring most prominently across wish lists, Hong Kongers’ imaginations are clearly gravitating towards Japan, Thailand, Taiwan, United Kingdom and Indonesia.
Dreaming about a change in scenery and the opportunity to enjoy a stay experience outside of their own home, the most wish listed types of places to stay for Hong Kongers are hotels, apartments, resorts, guest houses and aparthotels. Hotels account for 55% of all properties wish listed by Hong Kongers over the last two months, noticeably higher than the global average of 40%.
With a mission to make it easier for everyone to experience the world, Booking.com is also offering additional encouragement to all those dreaming of travel. Simply download and sign in to the Booking.com app to make a personalized wish list by clicking ‘save’ for three accommodations between 10 June and 1 July to immediately receive a reward of 10 Euro (approximately $87 HKD) added to your Virtual Wallet to use on future travel when it’s safe again.
Arjan Dijk, Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer at Booking.com, said: “These are unprecedented and challenging times in which safety remains the top priority. We also know that in such times, dreaming about experiencing the world again has immense power to fire our imaginations and keep spirits high. It’s amazing to see the array of different travel experiences our customers have been busy dreaming about while they wait for the opportunity to travel again. Building a wish list on Booking.com is an inspirational way for everyone to start dreaming about travel again, and we are committed to making it easy for them to turn those dreams into reality when the time is right.”
*Methodology: based on comparing wish list data on Booking.com between March and April 2020 to the same months in 2019. Customers on Booking.com can wish list properties by clicking the ‘heart’ button present on every property’s listing on the platform.
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