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Foreign travel a popular choice in 2022

Study by IMC Krems and Corps Touristique: people are more selective when planning holidays abroad

83% of Austrians aged over 18 are planning to go away on holiday in 2022, with 66% considering going abroad. The five most popular destinations are Italy, Croatia, Germany, Greece and Spain. A holiday on the beach or next to the pool is still the number one choice of foreign holiday for Austrians. This is followed by city breaks, which have grown significantly in popularity this year. There is also renewed interest in package holidays. The focus of holidaymakers’ plans is the peak summer season, which is increasingly spilling over into the autumn: the busiest months for holidays abroad in 2022 are likely to be August and September. 

Portrait von Claudia Bauer-Krösbacher und Larissa Neuburger

Claudia Bauer-Krösbacher and Larissa Neuburger have analysed holidaymakers’ preferences for 2022 in their latest trend report with Corps Touristique.

Car and train very popular

The car is still the most common way of getting to holiday destinations, but more and more people are deciding to take the train. While most Austrians prefer to go on holiday with their partner, family and friends, there is increased interest in travelling alone in 2022. Four-star hotels remain the most favoured type of accommodation, followed by holiday lets and privately owned lodgings.

Focus on relaxation

For Austrians, the most important reasons for taking a holiday in 2022 are the opportunity to relax and recuperate, escape from their everyday routines, and unwind from stress. The main considerations when choosing where to spend their holidays are cleanliness and hygiene, safety and weather. However, the local cuisine and uniqueness of the scenery are becoming increasingly significant factors. Recommendations from friends or family are the most important source of information when making plans, ahead of service providers’ websites (e.g. hotels and airlines) as well as travel portals.

Last-minute bookings for short breaks made directly or via platforms

Booking platforms and booking directly with providers remain the primary ways in which Austrians purchase their foreign holidays. But the option of making bookings face-to-face with a travel agency has gained in importance.

The time of booking is also changing: longer holidays are still reserved far in advance (at least three months), while travellers are making more and more last-minute reservations for short breaks (between a week and a month before departure). Austrians’ holiday budgets have increased slightly on last year.

Cancellation options and Covid situation still important

When planning and booking holidays, the option to cancel and coronavirus-related restrictions at the respective destination are essential. Information about the current situation as well as rules and regulations, and easy access to testing are the most important Covid-related factors for holidaymakers when they are on vacation. Safety measures concerning buffet service and 72-hour periods before rooms are reoccupied are now less important. 

It appears that people’s worries and fears about travelling abroad have diminished somewhat. The absence of official travel safety warnings and restrictions are, however, still important factors for a return to pre-Covid holiday travel patterns. In summary, it is fair to say that there is a stronger desire to travel in general, and for foreign trips in particular. Travellers are planning vacations more selectively to take account of the Covid regulations at the time of travel.

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