75.3% Indians say demonetisation did not affect their travel plans

Post Demonetisation, 90% Indian travellers’ book via credit/debit card: Yatra

Yatra.com, one of India’s leading online travel portals, conducted their annual summer survey which showcases the trends of Indian travellers planning a vacation this summer. The latest survey clearly shows that demonetization has had no major impact on travel plans. Nearly 90% per cent respondents are planning a summer vacation this year opposed to only 83% in 2016. Another key finding from the survey established that there has been more than 100% increase in Indians looking to travel to USA since last year and 208% increase in Indians travelling to Europe since post Brexit.

As an alternate solution to minimize the impact of demonetization on vacations over 80% Indians are opting to reduce the number of days to travel and compromise on accommodation. Ironically, luxury travel has also witnessed a rise with 48% Indians willing to spend more than Rs.50000 per person on travel this summer versus 18% last year. While nearly 80% Indians are looking to stay in hotels this summer, only 4% prefer staying with friends/relatives. Homestays, a trend is rapidly gaining popularity in India and has seen an increase in preference by over 100% this summer. This states that new age travellers seek out unique experiences in the course of their travels and self-expenditure is a priority for the travellers while vacationing. 

While desktops and laptops continue to be the preferred medium of booking, a significant 40% prefer booking via mobile indicating the increased smartphone and internet penetration across the country. Also, nearly 80% Indians prefer to book their travel through an Online Travel portal. The survey shows that more than 50% Indian travellers read online reviews before planning their vacation followed by 30% seeking recommendation from friends. On the back of continued low airfares, more than 80% travelers prefer air travel to any other mode of transport.

The survey revealed that hill stations are the most popular summer holiday destination this year followed by Kerala and Goa. While 24% of travellers believe that relaxation during holidays is the key reason to travel, 72% of the respondents said that they do not switch off from work even during vacation. Nearly 40% Indian travellers use their laptops while travelling by air.

Commenting on the findings from the survey, Mr. Sharat Dhall, President, Yatra.com says, “It is very encouraging to see that the number of people taking a holiday during summer is increasing year-on-year. It is heartening to note that demonetization did not have a major impact on the peak travel season. The surge in international travel highlights that things are back to normal and also underlines that millennials are relatively intrepid and unlikely to be phased by economic problems or political unrest. Helped by relatively low airfares, there has been a shift in the passengers from rail to air. This is on account of the continued low oil prices and an increase in the capacity by both new entrants and the incumbent players.”

An interesting finding reveals that discounts on airfares make travellers most happy while planning their holiday. Also, free food and drinks and extra leg space on the flight is an added advantage for the same price. Highlighting the trend of long weekend travel, nearly 30% of the respondents said that they are planning to travel for 3 – 4 days, while 58% said that they will travel for more than a week.

Key Highlights:

·         Post demonetization, 90% of Indian travellers book by debit/credit card

·         More than 100% increase in Indians looking to travel to USA since last year; 208% increase in Indians travelling to Europe since last year; South East Asia travel sees a sharp decline

·         Post Brexit, an increase of 208% Indians looking at Europe as their preferred travel destination

·         Despite demonetization, Luxury travel has also witnessed a rise with almost 48% per cent people willing to spend above INR 50,000 on travel in summers as against 18% cent last year

·         36.7% Indian travellers use their laptops while travelling by air

·         Over 40% Indians are looking to book their travel via mobile this summer

·         Goa takes a back seat, Hills the preferred destination this summer season

·         Family trips see a phenomenal rise with almost 50% opting for family vacation in 2017 as compared to only 45% in 2016

·         67% opt for desktop as their mode of bookings; 79% would like to book through an online travel agent

·         Indians seem to be caught in the daily grind of corporate life, don’t switch off from work during holidays

·         Indians continue to take frequent breaks with over 59% taking more than 4 vacations in a year

·         Around 50% of travellers are booking their tickets anytime between 1 -3 months in advance compared to 43% in 2016 due to the ongoing trend of high last minute fares.