Travellers’ demand for more flexibility is defining post-pandemic travel as customer seek to manage a wider range of potential issues. This is one of the key trends highlighted in the States of Mind Travel Report published by Allianz Partners.
Drawing on insights from leading industry experts (Joe Mason, Chief Marketing Officer for Travel, Allianz Partners, and Luís Araújo, President, European Travel Commission) and Allianz’s own customer trends data, the report highlights the increase in stress factors facing travellers today.
As well as navigating ongoing health-related concerns, travellers now face geopolitical turbulence, high inflation, and wider economic uncertainties. This is leading to a new attitude to travel, where in-built flexibility and protection against the “what-ifs” are even more essential.
Allianz’ data reveals that demand has seen customer intentions to purchase travel insurance across five major European markets (Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, UK) shoot up from 21% in 2019 to 55% in 2022 for international travel, and from 12% to 26% for domestic travel. In line with rising demand, Allianz Partners recorded its highest ever level of claims for post-departure benefits in 2022.
The research also highlights the following trends:
- “Work-from-anywhere” goes mainstream: growth in remote and hybrid working means more travellers of all ages are combining business and leisure. But the report highlights the adaptations required in the travel industry to meet these demands – such as the need for updated regulation, resolutions to tax residency issues and the need for investment at popular destinations.
- With hybrid working models likely here to stay into the future, more travellers expect to work from abroad more frequently or from a secondary or family residence in the future. Allianz Partners’ research has found that 28% of travellers aged 18 to 25 expect to work from abroad more frequently or from a secondary or family residence in the future.
- 2022 has been marked by larger family groups across multiple generations, driving significant change in the industry. Flexibility is key: 58% of younger families now plan to make flexible travel reservations to deal with unforeseen circumstances. Hotels and resorts must need to cater for a wider spectrum of guests and become much more adaptable to a diverse customer base.
- While a large minority (41%) of consumers are conscious of the environmental impact of travel, sustainability remains a relatively minor factor in travel decision-making processes.