Singapore travellers seek greater ‘impact awakening’ for travel in 2021: Booking.com’s Future of Travel Study
Sustainability and eco-consciousness key for Singapore travellers, according to Booking.com’s 2021 Future of Travel predictions
The Future of Travel survey by digital travel leader Booking.com found nine key trends shaping the future of travel in 2021 and beyond, with ‘impact awakening’ - referring to the rise of responsible travel - emerging as a key insight.
With the respite from international travel brought about by COVID-19, travellers have become increasingly aware of the wider impact of their globetrotting habits on the environment and local communities. In particular, the study found that nearly half (47%) of Singaporean travellers would like to travel more sustainably in the future, with more than two-thirds (73%) expecting the travel industry to offer more sustainable travel options.
This increased eco-consciousness amongst local travellers is also in line with Singapore’s sustainable aspirations, with the recent announcement of the new Singapore Green Plan 2030, set to deepen and accelerate efforts to mitigate and adapt to climate change, and embrace sustainability as a nation.
Additional insights gleaned from the Future of Travel Study on sustainable travel include:
- Travellers are more mindful than before COVID-19 of their impact - on the environment, local communities and the tourism economy
- 65% of Singaporean travellers want their travel choices to support the destination’s recovery efforts, with almost half wanting to see how their money is going back to the local community (49%)
- 67% are more likely to stay away from crowded tourist attractions, with 59% avoiding travel during peak season and half (50%) remaining open to visiting alternative destinations to avoid overcrowding
- As a region, we are collectively taking small but important steps towards being responsible travellers
- While 41% of Singapore travellers note they want to travel more in the future to make up for lost time, a greater percentage of Singapore travellers (47%) have shared their desire to be more eco-conscious when they travel
- Most Southeast Asian respondents would consider reducing waste and/or recycling their plastic on their travels, but are still less willing to pay for carbon offsetting or avoid a destination because travelling there would be environmentally taxing at this stage;
- That said, 50% of Singapore travellers would consider reducing waste and/or recycling plastic while travelling, and more than two-thirds (73%) of them expect the travel industry to offer more sustainable travel options in the long-term by offering attractive off-season travel packages (51%).
These insights no doubt indicate the ongoing desire to continue travelling with an increasingly eco-conscious mindset. Booking.com has continued to develop resources with tips and information to help properties operate more sustainably overall and innovated its products so partners can more easily show their sustainable practices to customers, including eliminating single-use practices, electricity-saving measures and ways to reduce their water usage. Locally, Singapore-based hotels are also doing more in the green hospitality space - with hotels such as the award-winning PARKROYAL COLLECTION Pickering leading the charge with its commitment to green initiatives, energy conservation and tropical architecture, alongside other sustainability-minded properties such as Oasia Hotel, Grand Hyatt Singapore and Marina Bay Sands.
How consumers can get involved - one step at a time
To support a greener tourism rebound, consumers can start to be more conscious about their choices when travelling again. This includes small steps such as:
- Choose greener modes of transport - Opt to travel to your destination by train, bus or carpool to reduce your carbon footprint, or choose local holidays like staycations to explore your own country adventures. For further-flung adventures requiring a long-haul flight, consider offsetting your CO2 emissions by donating to an eco third party and continue to use public transportation when you've reached your destination.
- Think and consume local. When travelling, one of the best ways to support the local economy and limit your carbon footprint is to shop locally, eat food from street vendors or at restaurants that use sustainably sourced produce.
- Reduce, reuse, recycle - start to actively think about reducing waste by opting for reusables, and keep an eye out for recycling bins in your accommodation or vicinity.
- Bring Your Own (BYO). Avoid single-use plastic waste by bringing your own water bottle or your own toiletries instead of using the ones supplied at accommodations to significantly reduce unnecessary wastage.
Impact Awakening was one of nine key data-driven 2021 insights and travel trends unveiled by Booking.com in October 2020, which was based on research from over 20,000 travellers across 28 countries, coupled with insights from Booking.com data.
METHODOLOGY / NOTES TO EDITORS
*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 must be planning to travel in the next 12 months (if/once travel restrictions are lifted). In total 20,934 respondents across 28 countries were polled (including from 999 USA, 496 from Canada, 497 from Mexico, 997 from Colombia, 999 from Brazil, 499 from Argentina, 995 from Australia, 499 from New Zealand, 999 from Spain, 996 from Italy, 996 from France, 999 from UK, 996 from Germany, 498 from Netherlands, 499 from Denmark, 499 from Sweden, 498 from Croatia, 1001 from Russia, 498 from Israel, 997 from India, 994 from China, 499 from Hong Kong, 497 from Thailand, 496 from Singapore, 499 from Taiwan, 997 from South Korea, 500 from Vietnam and 995 from Japan). Respondents completed an online survey in July 2020.
**Based on the share of filter users who used the “pet friendly” filter, comparing the average use of the filter across 2019.
***Based on endorsements left on Booking.com as part of post-stay reviews. Insight based on endorsements that saw the biggest increase in monthly usage between 1st April 2020 and 11th September 2020, compared to the average monthly endorsements between January 2019 and February 2020.
****Research commissioned by Booking.com and independently conducted among a sample of 50,688 respondents across 29 markets. In order to participate in this survey, respondents had to be 18 years of age or older, had to have travelled at least once in the past 12 months and be either the primary decision maker or involved in the decision making of their travel. The survey was taken online and took place in November 2019.
Founded in 1996 in Amsterdam, Booking.com has grown from a small Dutch startup to one of the world’s leading digital travel companies. Part of Booking Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: BKNG), Booking.com’s mission is to make it easier for everyone to experience the world. 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 29 million total reported accommodation listings, including more than 6.7 million listings alone 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.
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