APAC Travel Confidence Index 2022

Kiwi’s are eager to travel again – but at what cost?

Country Rankings - TCI 2022

 Booking.com’s inaugural APAC Travel Confidence Index reveals the majority (79%) of Kiwis are likely to travel in the next 12 months 

More than half (53%) are travelling to reunite with family but many (47%) are concerned about the cost to do so within the current climate 

In New Zealand only one in ten (10%) indicated that work was a reason for them to book a trip indicating a slower revitalisation in corporate vs leisure travel 

AUCKLAND, 30 June 2022 – New research released today from Booking.com, the world’s leading online travel company, shows Kiwis are eager to reunite with family as pandemic travel restrictions have finally eased, however the cost to do so may be standing in the way. 

After more than two years stuck on the shores of Aotearoa, Kiwis are finally able to venture further afield following the easing of travel restrictions earlier this year. For more than half (53%) of New Zealander’s long-awaited family reunions are the driving force behind wanting to dust off the passport yet, it seems that from our far-flung corner of the Pacific, the price of travel will be a huge influence on plans. For the majority of New Zealanders (71%) cost is the greatest consideration when it comes to post-pandemic travel, much higher than the average for almost half (47%), of all travellers in Asia-Pacific. 

The insights have been drawn from Booking.com’s inaugural APAC Travel Confidence Index, which provides a snapshot of how confident consumers feel about exploring the world again and their motivation to travel. 

The commissioned research, which polled 11,000 travellers from 11 countries and territories¹ including over 1000 from New Zealand between April and May 2022, combined with the company’s proprietary data and insights as a digital travel leader for the past 25 years, offers insights into the region’s travel confidence. 

Travel Confidence Market Ranking 

The Travel Confidence Index explores the overall comfort levels, motivators and concerns of consumers across Asia-Pacific and how this varies across the region. Across the 11 countries polled, India emerged most confident with a clear majority (86%) of Indian travellers stating they intend to travel in the next 12 months; followed closely by Vietnam and China. New Zealand comes in fourth place, unsurprisingly with 79% of Kiwis intending to travel within the next year. 

While North Asian markets of Korea, Taiwan and Japan ranked lower on the index in terms of overall confidence, travel intent among respondents remained relatively high (above 60%). 

Top travel considerations and motivators 

The desire to travel remains strong amongst Kiwi travellers overall, with cost, safety and convenience the top three considerations for those looking to book travel in the next year. In comparison, the top two considerations which ranked consistently high across all markets were ease of planning and booking travel, even as restrictions continue to ease around the region. 

Across the region, the desire to “just get away” (46%) emerged as the top motivator to travel for APAC consumers after two years of lockdowns and a rapidly evolving travel landscape; followed closely by a “getaway to recharge mentally” for 36% of respondents. For Kiwis, the top three motivators for travel are visiting family (53%); getting away (47%) and rebooking a pre-covid trip (26%). 

While corporate travel is beginning to make a comeback, the shift to remote working and virtual meetings has perhaps brought about a shift in the way we work. In New Zealand only one in ten (10%) indicated that work was a reason for them to book a trip indicating a slower revitalisation in corporate vs leisure travel. For the region, the response was only slightly higher at 13%. 

Top travel deterrents 

Unsurprisingly, uncertainty due to the constantly evolving COVID-19 situation continues to plague travellers. Top concerns for Kiwis varied from the region with almost half concerned with the ‘possibility of getting stuck because of frequently changing border regulations’ (48%), followed by close to half concerned by cost (47%) and a third worried at the prospect of ‘having to cancel my booking at the last minute because of border restrictions’ (35%). 

When asked whether travellers accepted disruptions as being part and parcel of travel now, interestingly nearly half of Japanese (47%) and Korean (32%) respondents said no - the only two markets to do so. In contract, most Kiwis (74%) are neutral or accept disruptions as the norm of travel in a post-COVID world. 

Welcoming visitors 

When it comes to opening borders and welcoming international visitors to Kiwi shores, New Zealanders are largely (82%) comfortable or neutral about reopening to the wider world. In fact, confidence is high (79%) among Kiwis on the readiness to receive international visitors. After years being closed off to the world, New Zealand will reopen to overseas visitors from July this year. 

“It’s truly been heart-warming and exciting to see travel in New Zealand returning with the easing of most border restrictions. This has reinvigorated not just consumers, but the travel industry overall. 

Our APAC Travel Confidence Index reflects how while travel intent remains strong, travel confidence remains nuanced and varied across Asia compared to New Zealand. It is a promising indication of the opportunities available for the industry to adapt and collaborate now to bolster the overall confidence of travellers, so we can truly make it easier for everyone to travel and experience the world again in a sustainable way.” shared Tracey Foxall, Regional Manager, Oceania at Booking.com. 

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Krystal Warren, krystalw@thisismango.co.nz

ABOUT BOOKING.COM Part of Booking Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: BKNG), Booking.com’s mission is to make it easier for everyone to experience the world whenever it’s safe to do so again. By investing in the technology that helps take the friction out of travel, Booking.com seamlessly connects millions of travellers with memorable experiences, a range of transportation options and incredible places to stay - from homes to hotels and much more. As one of the world’s largest travel marketplaces for both established brands and entrepreneurs of all sizes, Booking.com enables properties all over the world to reach a global audience and grow their businesses. Booking.com is available in 44 languages and offers more than 28 million total reported accommodation listings, including more than 6.5 million listings of homes, apartments and other unique places to stay. No matter where you want to go or what you want to do, Booking.com makes it easy and backs it all up with 24/7 customer support. 

Follow us on Twitter and Instagram, like us on Facebook, and for the latest news, data and insights, please visit our global media room. METHODOLOGY ¹The online survey, which polled 11,000 individuals from Singapore, Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Korea, New Zealand, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam, was aimed at tracking the impact of geopolitical and societal diversities of the region, alongside the varied response to the COVID-19 pandemic on overall confidence levels when it comes to restarting travel.