Almosafer reveals key post-pandemic travel trends in Saudi Arabia one month after borders open
- Domestic tourism remains strong as Saudis continue to explore the kingdom’s vast tourism offering
Saudi Arabia : Almosafer, the Kingdom’s leading omnichannel travel brand, reveals key information about the travel preferences of Saudi nationals a month after the borders open. Almosafer’s study looked at consumer research and bookings over the period of 17e May 16e June 2021 compared to the same period before the pandemic in 2019 and found promising signs of a resumption of travel as travelers from Saudi Arabia venture out to explore the world again and continue to explore the vast tourism offer of the Kingdom.
The results consolidate the findings of Almosafer’s second comprehensive travel opinion survey conducted earlier this year, which found that more than 80% of Saudi respondents plan to travel abroad within the first six months of the trip. opening of the border. Since the resumption of international travel from the kingdom last month, Almosafer has recovered 76% of total bookings compared to the same period in 2019 and expects this percentage to increase further by the fourth quarter to exceed the booking volume ahead of the pandemic as more travel restrictions are lifted and more destinations reopen for visitors around the world.
The data also shows that domestic travel is in high demand due to the growing appeal of local destinations among Saudi nationals, as well as the breadth of supply created by Almosafer, from tailor-made packages to a variety of tours and of bookable attractions available on the brand’s national activities. market. Almosafer has allocated significant funds, research and product development efforts to strengthen its national offering, in line with the Kingdoms wider program to improve the contribution of the tourism sector to the national economy and will continue to do so with several innovative product launches planned for the coming month.
The main local destinations are Jeddah, Riyadh, Al Khobar and Dammam, while the new trending destinations which have gained popularity over the past year are Al Jubail, Abha and Jizan.
Destinations of interest beyond Saudi Arabia in the MENA region include the UAE, Qatar, Bahrain, and Egypt topping the list due to their proximity and familiarity. However, with Saudi international travelers prioritizing safe destinations without quarantine, a few new trending destinations have entered the top 20 list, including Ukraine, one of Europe’s least explored treasures, is known for its variety. attractions, quirky restaurants, upbeat music and vibrant art scene. Morocco has also established itself as a trendy destination offering magnificent natural landscapes and beaches, a rural and cultural heritage. Additionally, the Maldives are a favorite among couples and families looking for a memorable, relaxing beach getaway.
The data analyzed also revealed that Saudi nationals opt for shorter trips abroad (5% shorter stays) and spend 5% more per booking to achieve higher levels of comfort, convenience and better social distancing options (16% increase in business class and 14% increase in first class bookings). With the ever-changing status of travel restrictions on various destinations, travelers’ booking window has been reduced by 30%, Saudis are planning their trips less in advance as they make travel decisions based on current situations.
When it comes to travel companions, the study shows a clear tendency to travel in small groups or in pairs, which could be attributed to the fact that Saudis wish to test the waters of certain destinations before setting out with groups and groups. larger families. Research indicates an average of 2 Pax per booking for international destinations compared to 2.5 Pax during the same period in 2019 before the pandemic.
Muzzammil Ahussain, EVP at Almosafer, said: “Based on the early results we’ve seen from Almosafer’s bookings and research over the past month, we are very optimistic about the future of the travel industry in Saudi Arabia. Thanks to our in-depth consumer survey we conducted earlier this year, we were able to better understand the new travel preferences of Saudis after the pandemic and offer them unprecedented travel advice that allows them to plan their next international trips. and national with ease and convenience ”.
“Due to the various travel restrictions in place around the world, it was interesting to see the changes in the mix of the top 20 destinations which saw a few new destinations emerging that were not on the travel lists of Saudi nationals previously, such as Greece, Bosnia and Albania. Despite the open borders, we are pleased to see that domestic travel is still in demand and that our efforts to promote domestic bookings are bearing fruit. Through Almosafer’s domestic business market and expert travel advice, we will continue to develop a diverse range of unique local experiences that Saudis can experience in their home country, with a focus on the experiences culture and adventure ”.
Almosafer’s dedicated team of experienced travel advisors provide a holistic customer support system offering 24/7 assistance, valuable information, safety advice, guidance and assurance throughout the journey. the omnichannel booking experience. This includes travel recommendations regarding travel requirements, destination safety, airline operations, and precautionary measures to consider when traveling internationally.
© Press release 2021