Tourism

The new big trend in domestic travel

So often, we find ourselves writing about beautiful international destinations.

From Europe to Canada and Fiji, these are places on everyone’s bucket list.

But one thing we don’t write enough about is Aussies travelling domestically.

Luckily, thanks to some new research, Aussies are begining to travel not merely domestically, but into regional Australia.

Roughly 77 per cent of regional Australians and 73 per cent of city-dwellers visited a non-city destination in the past year according to new research from Kantar TNS.

And regional travel is even more attractive in 2018.

80 per cent of regional-dwellers and three-quarters (74 per cent) of those living in cities are intending to visit a non-city destination in the next 12 months.

The findings headline Domesticate 2018 – the 12th annual syndicated study into the travel attitudes of Australians and outlook for the domestic travel industry by Kantar TNS; but the major insight, says the company’s Director of Travel and Leisure Ed Steiner, is that the key to making a regional destination stand-out is to stop talking about ‘regional’ travel.

“People don’t think about regional destinations as brands. Marketers must be especially wary of language and talk about ‘experiences’ not ‘destinations’.”

“What is resonating with travellers about regional travel is the true diversity of experiences on offer.”

The key to unlocking a destination’s potential is emphasising the right combination of experiences that are unique to a place and its surroundings, adds Steiner.

“People’s need to constantly refresh is a consistent driver of their travel.”

“Escaping the ‘every day’ is vital and getting away from crowds is now the second most important motivator of intrastate travel after relaxation.”

“Australia is a short-break destination, yet we are competing with longer holidays to Fiji, Bali and New Zealand.”

“The impending Easter Long Weekend and upcoming school holidays are popular times for families, especially to explore their great Aussie ‘backyard’ and regional operators must promote their experiences first if they want to capture that market share.”

“Overwhelmingly, we found through our qualitative research that for Australians, it is what they can do at the destination that really counts, says Steiner.

“Travellers are drawn to experiences, which means destinations cannot be a one-trick pony.”

“In particular, Indigenous culture and post-settlement are motivators of regional travel – Australians want to learn more about our people, our past and our land.

“From delivering experiences that extend into the evening to leveraging the sounds and sights of nature, it’s all about optimising relaxation. Indigenous cultural experiences will also drive repeat visitation.”

Holidays are now considered an essential expense for Australians to ‘escape’ their city life. Short breaks alleviate stress, more so if outside cities, but regional marketers must get more savvy to cut through the clutter.

In 2018, the top five domestic travel experiences being considered by regional Australians are beach/coastal (64 per cent), metro/city (50 per cent), food/wine (40 per cent), national parks (38 per cent) and events/festivals (36 per cent).

For city-dwellers, it is beach/coastal (57 per cent), metro/city (47 per cent), food/wine (42 per cent), national parks (32 per cent) and a tie for fifth between small towns and events/festivals (both 29 per cent).

Interestingly; hills/mountains, rivers/lakes and bush/outback all rated greater than 20 per cent for both regional and city residents; while adventure also tipped the scale at 23 per cent for regional dwellers.

Regional Australians are also finding metro/city experiences less appealing this year (down from 59 to 50 per cent), the snow has more than doubled for both groups (from six to 15 per cent) while rivers/lakes are going to be more frequently visited by regional Aussies in 2018 (up to 33 per cent from 22 per cent).

The influence of all traditional travel influencer channels also fell in 2018 with the exception of word-of-mouth.

Destination websites fell to 30 per cent from 38 per cent in 2017, special packages and online offers to 27 per cent from 34 per cent and online review sites to 23 per cent from 31 per cent.

Critically, over half (54 per cent) of Australians also think most information on social media is unreliable compared to just 27 per cent of their APAC neighbours, adds Steiner.

“We are finding that Australian travellers are far more cynical when it comes to what information they consume and act upon using social media.”

“In fact, half of Aussies (49 per cent) feel the branded content on social media is not even relevant to them compared to a quarter (26 per cent) of APAC travellers.”

“This means it is absolutely crucial that content planning is not simply based around the reach of a network.”

“Brands not only need to improve the way that content relates to their customers in the moment, but they also need to work harder to build trust.”

SEE WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING

Destinations

Tripadvisor names top 10 foodie experiences worldwide

Because what’s a Friday without a story filled with pictures of delicious food from your pals at Travel Weekly?

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Air France to welcome its first female CEO

This is a huge win for the airline industry, considering only 12 out of 286 IATA airlines are run by women.

Share

CommentComments

Cruise

ATTN AGENTS: Royal Caribbean launches its biggest incentive yet!

Just when you thought all the exciting end of year incentives were over, RCL has gone and blown our expectations launching their biggest consultant incentive yet.

Share

CommentComments

Hotels

The off-the-grid cabins every city-slicker is dying to book

by Melina Gouveia

Ditch the commitments, heed the call of the wild, and cure your nature deficient disorder with these swanky cabins.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Let’s make Poke! Hawaiian Airlines’ industry guests join Chef Lee Anne Wong in Sydney

Hawaiian Airlines hosted a fun promotion at the Sydney Cooking School recently inviting guests including key travel industry partners to meet Hawaiian Airlines Executive Chef Lee Anne Wong

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

Why Hawaii is the perfect destination for conferences and incentive groups

From lei greetings and a backdrop of palm trees, to white sand beaches and championship golf courses, the Hawaiian Islands are the ideal destination for memorable meetings, conventions and incentive programs.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

What’s new in Kauai?

Check this list to see what’s happening in Kauai, Hawaii.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

Sizzlin’ December news from the Island of Hawaii

As winter weather arrives on the continental United States, the island of Hawaii’s golden beaches, tropical weather, fresh cuisine and bounty of activities beckon visitors to experience it all.

Share

CommentComments

Hotels

Big Fat Hotel Wrap

Buckle up, because this is possibly one of the longest hotel wraps we’ve ever done. And if you read it slowly enough, you might be able to procrastinate until the weekend!

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

TTC CEO John Veitch tips Egypt as “the hot destination” for 2019

And that’s not just because of the temperature! Though we assume it would also be very hot climate-wise, considering it’s mostly desert.

Share

CommentComments

Road & Rail

Big Fat Road & Rail Wrap

We’ll save our usual procrastinating joke because this road and rail wrap is short and sweet – so you’ll have to find another excuse not to do any work today.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Start packing lighter: Aussie airlines are now weighing carry-on bags

However, there’s no rule to stop you wearing everything you own to thwart baggage weight restrictions instead. Well, not yet.

Share

CommentComments