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What women travelers want in 2021

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To celebrate International Women’s Day, we dive into Booking.com data to uncover what women travelers are looking for in post-pandemic travel experiences

With vaccines slowly rolling out and countries beginning to open their borders to international flights, women around the world are eager to embrace travel.

Over half of the women (55%) we surveyed globally say travel restrictions have heightened their desire to see more of the world. And a significant number of them—65%—have promised to never take travel for granted again.

On top of being healthy indicators of pent-up pandemic demand, these statistics signal that women may do things a little differently in 2021. Following International Women’s Day, we dig into survey statistics to see how you can attract women travelers as the world begins to travel again.

Point me to the nearest beach

Early in the pandemic, we saw a shift in booker search patterns away from city destinations and toward rural experiences in nature, like beaches and mountains. To cater to that trend, we created an intent-based discovery tool. For example, when it knows a booker is interested in beach trips, it will match that intent by recommending properties located near the closest beaches, even if those beaches are many miles away.

This is a new way for partners who aren’t located in big cities to be found and matched with bookers, without requiring travelers to know where exactly they want to go before they search. If your property is located near a beach, this new functionality could be beneficial for you.

Marketing to the trend: With 42% of global women travelers saying they plan to take a beach break next year, this is a large group to focus on. If you want to target bookers by country when it’s safe to do so, the women most keen on booking a beach trip were those in Croatia (59%), Russia (59%), Brazil (54%), and Argentina (52%).

An appetite for adventure

It’s no stretch to say that being cooped up for a year at home has made people eager to travel – both men and women. Some are ready for a real adventure.

When we asked, one in eight (15%) women globally indicated that they plan to take an adventure trip in the coming year. The most adventurous responders by far were German women, with 69% of them planning an adventure trip, followed by women in India (27%), Colombia (26%), and Mexico (23%).

Marketing to the trend: What kind of adventure can guests access from your property? If you haven’t already created partnerships with local experience providers, forging those partnerships now could be a great way to satisfy adventurous spirits. 

Maximum relaxation

While adventure calls for some women, others just want to take it easy. Over half (53%) of the women surveyed chose relaxation as the goal of their next trip. This is especially the case across Asian countries, with women from Japan (70%), Korea (67%), Hong Kong (66%), and Singapore (64%) indicating relaxation as their point of focus.

Marketing to the trend: Some partners provide guests with a printed list of the most popular activities in their area upon arrival. Consider creating a “maximum relaxation” list that shows guests how to do very little extremely well. If you want to promote relaxation at your property, consider ways to add ambient music, scents, and even colors to the guest experience and create a soothing atmosphere.

Keeping it simple

Committed travelers who have been deprived of the excitement of visiting international destinations may want to ease back into travel by starting simple. Almost three quarters (72%) of the women surveyed said they want to appreciate simpler experiences once it’s safe to travel again. Leading the way for simplicity are women from Thailand (87%), Colombia (84%), Mexico (82%), and Spain (79%).

Marketing to the trend: This trend dovetails nicely with both the focus on relaxing experiences and the desire to drift away (at least temporarily) from big cities and large crowds. As a local in your area, you may have your own list of natural attractions and simple activities that have kept you sane in the last year and that don’t require a lot of planning or equipment. This could be a great list to share with your guests.

Research commissioned by Booking.com and conducted among a sample of adults who have traveled for business or leisure in the past 12 months, and were planning to travel in the next 12 months (if/once travel restrictions are lifted). In total 20,934 respondents across 28 countries and territories were polled. Respondents completed an online survey in July 2020

 

What do you think of this page?

Takeaway
  • With 42% of women planning a beach vacation, the intent-based discovery tool we developed should get a lot of usage
  • One in eight women want adventure in their next trip, making local experience providers a good partner for you in 2021
  • Over half of all women will focus on relaxation as their goal, so having a list of restful local options may be useful
  • Simplicity is a strong trend for women after being unable to travel, which dovetails with other findings in the survey