One in four holidaymakers more influenced than ever – by on-screen destinations

A quarter of holidaymakers say their choice of destination is now more influenced than ever before – by places they have seen in films or TV shows, a travel trends report has found.

Over half of British travellers say they have researched or booked a trip to somewhere they have seen on screen – with TV shows or movies influencing their travel plans more than TikTok, Instagram, or podcasts.

And this trend shows no signs of slowing down in the year ahead – after it was predicted that TV and film sets would be a big influence on 2023 travel choices, which turned out to come true.

But this is not the only pop culture expected to impact travel choices in 2024 – as “Tour Tourism” is set to continue, following sell-out tours from the likes of Beyoncé and Taylor Swift this year.

The two global megastars triggered a wave of tourism in 2023 as fans flocked to their stadium shows – with many travelling from far and wide to be in attendance.

And in a new twist to Tour Tourism, perhaps driven by ticket prices, 30% of travellers say they would travel outside of their home city for a concert because tickets were cheaper elsewhere – and 43% would travel for a concert as an excuse to visit a new place.

The findings, based on research of 20,000 holidaymakers worldwide, have appeared in the “Unpack ’24” report, from Expedia Group, which has predicted some of the other top travel trends for the year ahead.

The most popular of these is set to be the “Destination Dupes” – which will see places that are a little unexpected, and more affordable than tried-and-tested hotspots, boom in popularity.

These include Palermo, dubbed “the new Lisbon”, and Taipei instead of Seoul, which has seen the biggest uptick in searches over the past year.

Almost six in ten (59%) UK holidaymakers would consider visiting a destination that is similar to a tourist hotspot, but not as well-known – with top reasons for this including the affordability (61%), it being less crowded (60%), and it having more of an authentic culture (26%)., a brand under the Expedia Group banner, also highlights the trend of “Dry Tripping” – where travellers detox while on holiday.

The study of 2,000 adults, who have been on holiday in the past, and plan to go in the next three years, found half would be interested in staying at hotels that offer easily accessible, alcohol-free beverage options – with four in ten likely to book a detox trip in the next year.

The hotelier also says a hotel’s overall “vibe” is becoming a strong indicator of travellers’ hotel choices – as guest reviews mentioning the term have increased an average of 1,090%, year-on-year.

Furthermore, Expedia Group also comprises Vrbo, which identified 42% of travellers book holiday homes with amenities they either cannot afford to have at home, or that they want to try out before they buy themselves.

Furthermore, three in ten say they would choose a holiday home with outdoor amenities, so they’d never have to leave the property.

The company is also predicting the rise of the “Go-cassion”, a trip to celebrate even the smallest milestone – as more than a fifth (21%) are looking for “any excuse” to go away with loved ones.

Exactly eight in ten have already travelled for a specific occasion, or intend to do so in the next year – with celebrating birthdays (49%), reunions (34%), and wedding anniversaries (31%), among the key events.

Ariane Gorin, from Expedia Group, said: “We leverage our travel data to create innovative tools that enhance the travel experience across our platforms.

“With Unpack ’24, we delve deep into our insights to uncover unexpected destinations and intriguing motivations behind people's travel choices.

“From “dry tripping”, to travelling to see Taylor Swift or Beyoncé, and the rising allure of places like Perth, Palermo, and Paros, these trends define the landscape of travel in 2024.”

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