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New Expedia Group data: Strong Q2 travel demand & the rise of long-haul destinations

New Q2 2022 Traveler Insights Report from Expedia Group Media Solutions indicates sustained travel demand despite headwinds

Seattle, US – Expedia Group Media Solutions, the global travel advertising platform connecting marketers with millions of travellers across the Expedia Group brands, today released its Q2 2022 Traveler Insights Report. The quarterly report combines Expedia Group first-party data and custom research with actionable insights and industry examples to support travel marketers on their continued journey toward rebuilding.

“Despite a variety of industry and economic headwinds during Q2, people still found a way to travel, and in many cases, went further afield,” said Jennifer Andre, Global Vice President, Media Solutions. “The return of long-haul and international family travel, higher hotel average daily rates and higher average ticket prices in Q2, are just a few positive indicators for what we hope will be a strong second half of 2022. Our latest report provides valuable data and insights to help marketers effectively reach and engage potential travellers and capture sustained traveller demand.”

Key findings from the Q2 2022 Traveler Insights Report include:
Travel Searches Hold Steady

Following a 25% quarter-over-quarter surge in searches globally between Q4 2021 and Q1 2022 across the Expedia Group branded sites, search volumes held steady in Q2, indicating sustained interest and enthusiasm to travel. Asia Pacific (APAC) saw strong double-digit growth between Q1 and Q2 (30%), followed by Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) at 10%.

Week-over-week global search volume fluctuated throughout Q2, with the strongest gains during the week of June 6. Week-over-week searches globally increased 10% following the June 10 announcement that the U.S. would no longer require COVID-19 testing for international travellers.

Search Windows Still Shorter

Seasonal holidays and a palpable desire to travel in the near term, coupled with economic and pandemic-related concerns and regional instability, contributed to growth in shorter search windows during Q1. Global share of searches in the 0- to 90–day window increased more than 5% quarter-over-quarter, with the 61- to 90–day window seeing the largest quarter-over-quarter lift at 15%.   

In Q2, the majority of global domestic searches fell within the 0- to 30–day window, while the share of searches in the 91- to 180+ day window decreased quarter-over-quarter. The continued easing of travel restrictions and testing requirements contributed to a double-digit quarter-over-quarter lift in international searches globally in the 0- to 90–day window, with the strongest growth in the 61- to 90–day window. This indicates that even though travellers have reverted to planning for the near term, they are still considering international trips. Destinations and travel brands should ensure international travellers are part of the audience targeting mix, and leverage search window and destination insights to further bolster their marketing strategy.

Long-Haul Destinations Returning

As with prior quarters, major cities and beach destinations around the world remained popular with travellers in Q2, but London and Paris had particularly strong showings. On the global top 10 list of booked destinations in Q2, London took the No. 3 spot, and made the top 10 list of booked destinations across all regions. London was the No. 1 booked destination by travellers from APAC and EMEA and made new appearances on the top 10 lists for travellers from Latin America (LATAM) and North America (NORAM).

Q2 also saw a significant increase in demand for long-haul flights – flights with a duration of 4+ hours – as travellers look to go further afield. There was more than a 50% year-over-year increase in global traveller demand for long-haul flights. Further illustrating the rise in long-haul flights, Q2 delivered more than 100% year-over-year growth in traveller demand for flights from the U.S. to Europe.

Demand Stays Strong Despite Rising Costs

Q2 continued the growth momentum from Q1, with lodging bookings at the highest in Expedia Group history. A prior-year comparison shows total gross bookings were up by double digits, as travel demand further improved. Lodging demand increased quarter-over-quarter in Q2, with APAC seeing the strongest growth. With sustained demand globally, average daily rates (ADR) in Q2 increased quarter-over-quarter and even more so compared to Q2 2019, while room night cancellation rates globally declined by double digits compared to Q2 2019.

Strong demand, rising fuel costs, and an increase in longer-distance flights booked drove a quarter-over-quarter increase in the global average ticket price during Q2. Compared to Q2 2019, the global average ticket price was up double-digits in Q2 2022, led by EMEA and APAC.

Growing Interest in Inclusive Travel

People around the world are increasingly seeking ways to have more meaningful and conscientious travel experiences. According to our recent Inclusive Travel Insights Report, 92% of consumers think it is important for travel providers to meet the accessibility needs of all travellers, yet only half of consumers have seen options that are accessible to all abilities when they are searching for and booking a trip.

These insights point to the gap in accessible and inclusive options in the travel marketplace, as well as the opportunities for travel brands to improve offerings and make travel accessible to all travellers, everywhere.

Consumers are also paying attention to a travel brand’s commitment to inclusion, diversity, and accessibility, and these commitments are influencing purchasing decisions. In fact, 78% of consumers said they have made a travel choice based on promotions or ads that they felt represented them through messaging or visuals, while 7 in 10 consumers would choose a destination, lodging, or transportation option that is more inclusive of all types of travelers, even if it’s more expensive.

More Q2 2022 Traveler Insights  

For more data and insights from more than 70 petabytes of exclusive global Expedia Group travel intent and demand data, download the full Q2 2022 Traveler Insights Report here. Subscribe to the Media Solutions blog and connect on Twitter and LinkedIn for more traveller trends and regional insights for marketers.

Co-Founder & Managing Editor - TravelDailyNews Media Network

Theodore is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of TravelDailyNews Media Network; his responsibilities include business development and planning for TravelDailyNews long-term opportunities.