SINGAPORE—Single apps for all travel needs, passport-free travel and mobile app check-in are the top three “new travel norms” expected by travelers in the next decade, according to new research by digital travel platform Agoda.
With the continued advancement of technology, revolutionary travel apps and better connectivity, people expect a lot more from their travel experience in the next decade. Specifically, Southeast Asians—half of all respondents in Indonesia (56%), Singapore (54%), Malaysia (53%), Taiwan (50%), the Philippines (48%) and Thailand (48%) consider this the norm in the next decade. This compares to only a third of people in the U.K. and the U.S. (33%).
Meanwhile, Singapore (50%), Vietnam (47%), Philippines (45%), China (44%) and Australia (41%) are the top five origins most likely to see a future with passport-free travel. In the U.K. and U.S., they are less expectant of this advancement with only 1 in 5 expecting it to be the norm within the next decade.
Technology has already made such a positive impact on how and where people travel as innovative technologies give travelers instant access to millions of hotels and home properties around the world with real-time pricing and availability.
“It is a technology golden age for travelers, as technology is developed to simplify the way anyone, anywhere can search, book and pay for flights, hotels or holiday accommodation,” said Timothy Hughes, VP corporate development, Agoda. “The 2000s was defined by the mouse and the computer, putting online travel booking just a click away. The 2010s was defined by the smart phone and app, and put a travel agent in the pocket of every phone owner, and the 2020s will be defined by the power of data and machine learning (AI). This will enable companies like Agoda to provide personalized, more relevant recommendations to make booking travel even easier. Asian travelers, in particular, are enthused by, and expectant of, technology developments that enhance and simplify their travel experience.”
Universally, people want to increase the amount of travel they undertake in the 2020s. Exploring more of their own country is cited by 40% of respondents globally, while international travel more often is anticipated at 35%.
What’s also interesting, in the context of global narratives on climate sustainability, is the trend that more than a quarter want to make more eco-friendly travel choices in the next decade. Travelers from Singapore, Thailand and Indonesia are most keen to make eco-friendlier choices perhaps more aware than others with the recent closure of Maya Bay in Thailand, and the Boracay rehabilitation program in Philippines, and thus travelers want to do their part even when on holiday.
Travelers in the 35-44 and 55-plus age groups are most likely to want to explore their own countries and territories more (40% and 42% respectively), with those from China, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, The Philippines, Taiwan, Thailand, U.S. and Vietnam choosing domestic destinations within their top three wishlist destinations for the coming decade.
Meanwhile Korean and Japanese travelers see themselves taking more solo trips in the next decade. Taiwanese and Indonesians would prefer taking a sabbatical or gap year.
Asia dominates the global travel wishlists destinations for the next decade, as travelers from both Asia and the West showcase a growing curiosity for Asian treasures like Kyoto, Japan famed for its Shinto shrine, Kyoto is an eclectic blend of culture, food and history, followed by Bangkok and Bali, Indonesia.
Travelers in Philippines, Thailand, Taiwan, Vietnam and Malaysia want to cross off their own capital cities from their travel lists. Meanwhile, South Korea, the U.K. and Australian travelers are the only one who don’t choose a domestic destination on their wishlists for travel in the next decade.
American and British travelers alike are most excited about visiting New York in the coming decade, with New York also a top three choice for travelers from Australia, Japan and South Korea. Both Malaysian and Indonesian travelers would like to visit Makkah by 2030.