PRELIMINARY REMARKS

Reply leverages Data and Analytics to gain insight into the impact of the novel coronavirus on society, consumers and industries. Using the Quentin Search Data tool developed by TD Reply, which aggregates data from Google Trends and Google Ads, this report focuses on the change in demand for international as well as domestic travel and how this impacts the Tourism Industry.

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This report is in no way intended to distract from the fact that the outbreak of the novel Coronavirus is primarily a human tragedy affecting hundreds of thousands of people.

As the situation evolves rapidly, please note that this page reflects the data collected up until 29 May 2020.

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UPS AND DOWNS

Following a very strong year for global Tourism, 2020’s decrease in international travel due to COVID-19 related measures is particularly striking. With hotels closed, planes grounded and many destinations unreachable by travellers, the Tourism Industry is experiencing a major shake-up.

2019

+5%

1.4 billion visitor arrivals globally

+4%

Total international Tourism exports: 1.7 trillion USD

2020

0%

of destinations without travel restrictions

45% closed to tourists borders and 30% of international flights suspended

22%

decrease in international arrivals in Q1 2020

Forecasted declines of 58% to 78% for the whole year

120 m

Direct tourism
jobs are
at risk

1 in 10 people worldwide will be affected in some way by the decline of Tourism

HOW HAS CONSUMER INTEREST IN TRAVEL CHANGED?

Interest in long-haul travel is severely affected, especially in countries that experienced higher case numbers. In the countries where COVID-19 broke out later, consumers wanted information about their long-haul travel plans and how to deal with them, which prompted an extreme peak of interest. The same interest spike was not noticed where COVID-19 arrived earlier.

EU-5 CONSUMER INTEREST IN TRAVEL

Data retrieved from Quentin, TD Reply’s Search Data tool, across 5 EU markets (DE, ES, IT, FR and UK). CW15-20 2019 vs CW15-20 2020.

FOCUS ON COUNTRIES THAT STRUGGLED WITH COVID-19 FROM THE START

On the contrary, countries rapidly affected by COVID-19 showed a sharp decline in travel interest just after the implementation of measures against the spread of the disease. As fear and uncertainty dominated, holiday plans quickly lost priority.

-72%

-55%

-17%

Data retrieved from Quentin, TD Reply’s Search Data tool, across 3 EU markets (ES, IT and FR). CW15-20 2019 vs CW15-20 2020.

HIGH PRESSURE ON AIRLINES

Fears surrounding the novel Coronavirus, border closures and other measures have already hit the Aviation Industry particularly hard, putting it under great financial pressure. In the longer term, stronger regulation, low demand and low airline equity could increase the cost of air travel to the consumer – the end of low-cost airfares could be approaching.

4

Airlines have
declared
bankruptcy

US$ 250 bn

Lost revenue
for airlines
in 2020

US$ 85 bn

Expected government
investment in airlines
globally

SHORT-HAUL FLIGHTS IN DECLINE

Short-haul trips require less planning. They usually aren’t booked much time in advance, which may be the reason why there is no initial peak in searches after the lockdown.+.

EU-5 CONSUMER INTEREST IN SHORT-HAUL TRAVEL

Data retrieved from Quentin, TD Reply’s Search Data tool, across 5 EU markets (DE, ES, IT, FR and UK). CW15-20 2019 vs CW15-20 2020.

INTEREST IN SHORT-HAUL DESTINATIONS PER COUNTRY

While the short-haul interest in Italy is significantly lower than in 2019 (with a total slump of -73%), interest in Germany seems to be growing again (although remaining under -50%).

-73%

-68%

-50%

-70%

-69%

Data retrieved from Quentin, TD Reply’s Search Data tool, across 5 EU markets (DE, ES, IT, FR and UK). CW15-20 2019 vs CW15-20 2020.

DOMESTIC TOURISM BOUNCES BACK

Germany has been one of the countries less affected by COVID-19 and is now slowly beginning to return to normality, which makes consumers rekindle holiday plans (+57%, CW15-20 2019 vs 2020). However, continued restrictions placed on international Tourism are shifting the interest focus onto domestic travel – as it is also happening in Italy, where restrictions begin to be lifted (-12%). Interest remains low in other countries – Spain -69%, France: -50%, UK: -60%, USA: -42%.

GERMANY DOMESTIC TRAVEL INTEREST

ITALY DOMESTIC TRAVEL INTEREST

SPAIN DOMESTIC TRAVEL INTEREST

Data retrieved from Quentin, TD Reply’s Search Data tool, across 6 EU markets (DE, ES, IT, FR, UK and US). CW15-20 2019 vs CW15-20 2020.

THE FUTURE OF TRAVEL

INCREASE IN DOMESTIC TOURISM

As mass Tourism and weekend vacations decline, city dwellers will be able to "reclaim" their cities.

On the other hand, a smaller offer leads to higher prices, making international travel a luxury for a few. As of now, "staycations" could stimulate new interest in domestic day trips and hidden places.

ALTERNATIVE MEANS OF TRANSPORT

Other means of transport will benefit from the increased concern and regulation around air travel. Trains, car rentals, boats and buses could be gaining passengers in the long term, since people would prefer to travel shorter distances in a more manageable environment.

RISE OF SLOW TRAVEL

Interest in long-haul destinations is still there, but people may prefer longer vacations considering the increased travel controls between countries.

NEW TRAVEL TECHNOLOGY

Touchless check-in: voice and gesture recognition are just a few of the solutions proposed for passengers’ contactless interaction at check-ins.

Health tracking: Wearable trackers may be able to detect signs of COVID-19 in wearers even before the onset of symptoms, increasing travel safety.