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The Travel Industry Trends 2023 report is published by the Mastercard Economics Institute

The Travel Industry Trends 2023 report is published by the Mastercard Economics Institute

Consumers, notably those from the Middle East and Africa (MENA), are taking advantage of a more conventional travel environment in 2023, prioritising leisure travel and opening up new routes throughout the globe, according to new findings from the Mastercard Economics Institute. The Travel Industry Trends 2023 research provides important information about the state of travel around the world, which is characterised by altering economic conditions, enduring consumer needs, and a reopening of mainland China.

The picture for 2023 is shaped by post-pandemic preferences for experiences over things1 and a steady demand for leisure travel in the face of economic difficulties. Business travel, which had initially lagged behind pleasure travel, began to gain ground in the second half of 2022, particularly in societies where returning to work was valued highly. Although cross-market turmoil is being caused by an uncertain economy, mainland China’s reopening is anticipated to boost global GDP.

Major conclusions include:

The corridors are created by travellers. In 2023, a brand-new dynamic developed as tourists began visiting nearby locations. This year, Saudi Arabia and Egypt both cracked the top 10, taking seventh and eighth, respectively. The United Kingdom, United States, United Arab Emirates, and France continue to be the top international travel destinations for people departing the Middle East.

Travel for both work and pleasure is accelerating at the same rate.With a 42% year-over-year shift from 2022 to 2023, both international leisure and business travel are now expanding at the same rate. In areas with a strong return to office culture, business flight bookings overtook leisure in the second half of 2022 and the early months of 2023. Bookings for leisure travel increased 49.5% in the UAE from January to March 2023 compared to the same period in 2022.

Experiences continue to be prioritised by tourists.There is still a preference for experiences over objects, and tourists from all over the world are showing an increased interest in the unusual. Travellers are choosing less well-known locations in quest of cultural immersion, possibly inspired by social media and entertainment. Compared to 2019, global expenditure on experiences has increased by 65% while spending on things has increased by 12%. Spending on experiences is increasing in several MENA nations, such Morocco, where it increased by an astounding 117.5% year over year by March 2023.

The business travel and entertainment recovery is expanding.When comparing March 2023 to March 2022 in the MENA region, small enterprises’ spending on travel and entertainment (T&E) increased by 49%. Spending on T&E by small enterprises increased by 56% from January to March 2023 compared to the same period in 2022, continuing the rising trend.In MENA, spending is increasing 78% from March 2019 to March 2023. Large enterprises also saw growth, but at slower rates for the same periods (14%, 40%, and 37%, respectively).

Source: traveldailymedia

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