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Skyscanner report highlights Gen Z travel trends in India

Indian Group of Gen Ziers

Skyscanner’s report reveals India’s Gen Z’s strong desire for overseas travel fueled by financial independence and a passion for exploration.

INDIA – Global travel marketplace, Skyscanner, has unveiled its latest report titled ‘First Trip with Skyscanner’, revealing a strong desire for travel among India‘s Gen Z (aged 18-25). Nearly half (47%) of them are eagerly planning leisure trips abroad, without their parents or guardians, fueled by their deep desire for exploration and new adventures (49%). What’s more interesting is that financial independence is key to Gen Zs, with a whopping 81% choosing to plan their first overseas adventure after landing their first job or receiving their first paycheck.

Taking your first overseas trip represents a significant milestone for numerous young adults worldwide. While many times it is with a graduation celebration, in India, it only becomes a reality after they land their first job. In fact, 2 in 3 young Indians are diligently saving, while only 1 in 5 utilise buy-now-pay-later options to make their travel dreams a reality sooner.

The survey results shed light on the travel behaviours and factors considered by Gen Z in India as they chart their course for their first independent trip without their parents or guardians. By understanding these travel aspirations, Skyscanner aims to assist young travellers in understanding their preferences and provide them with valuable resources to plan effectively ahead of their trips and find the best deals.

Skyscanner’s Travel and Destinations Expert, Mohit Joshi said, “Gen Zs in India are passionate about exploration! Whether it is their desire to seize the opportunity of semester breaks and long weekends to fuel their wanderlust (42%) or celebrate special milestones like birthdays, anniversaries, or graduations (39%), their passion for travel is undeniable. As their travel companion, we want to empower them to turn their travel dreams into reality by assisting them with the necessary resources and tools, ensuring their first trip goes without a hitch. Search features on Skyscanner like setting up ‘Price Alerts’ or using the ‘Cheapest Month’ tool, can help save an average of 32% on flights for Indian travellers.”

Key highlights from ‘First Trip with Skyscanner’ Report:
  • Gen Z Thrives on Experiencing Life’s Grand Spectacles: Gen Z craves the excitement of life’s defining moments, with 46% inspired to jet off overseas to experience concerts, sports events, and other big cultural events. That said, stepping outside their comfort zones and immersing themselves in cultural exploration is also a major drive for these travellers. With over half (51%) seeing travel as a chance to break free and immerse in new cultures, it’s all about expanding horizons.
  • Not just in landscapes, Indians need their greens even on their plates: Food is an integral part of the travel experience for most young travellers. Their excitement to explore extends well beyond destinations with Indians doing a fair bit of research to find vegetarian-friendly options and restaurants (43%) that offer a top-tier culinary experience tailored to their dietary preferences.
  • Meticulous planning is a hallmark of Gen Z: Gen Z travellers embarking on their first trip abroad like to plan every detail down to a T. Almost 3 in 4 Gen Z prefer having their itineraries (76%) and return tickets (73%) booked when planning their first trip. This generation is also budget-conscious, with over half (51%) prioritising finding affordable flights and accommodation for their first overseas trip. Skyscanner’s Price Alert feature helps these planners stay informed about any changes in flight prices through notifications – allowing them to secure the best deals. Additionally, utilising Skyscanner’s Whole Month search will also be helpful in identifying the cheapest day of the month to travel with just a few clicks.
  • Permission Slips & Travel Tips: Contrary to popular belief that Gen Z leans towards social media (34%) for travel advice, Skyscanner found that these young Indian travellers are turning to their trusted circle of friends (65%) and family (48%) for valuable travel advice. While seeking approval from parents & guardians to plan a trip may seem unusual to many, it is a common practice for Indians. In fact, 58% young travellers feel confident about receiving a green signal from them.
  • Safe Travels, Happy Travels: 63% of Gen Z travellers prioritise safety over budget when exploring the world without parental guidance. It is also interesting to note that over half (59%) of young Indians prefer popular destinations over off-beat locations for their first trip, seeking a balance between exploration and preference for these well-trodden paths and the comfort of familiar surroundings. In fact, this desire for familiarity may prompt 66% of these travellers to embark on their first trip without their guardians, either in a small group or with their romantic partners.
  • Europe Captures the Hearts of Young Indian Travellers: Many young Indian Gen Z travellers are drawn to Europe’s vibrant cultures and historic landmarks, with over 40% listing it as their top destination. The allure of iconic sights, charming, cobbled streets, and diverse experiences are particularly appealing, with nearly half (21%) having their hearts set on the United Kingdom.

For those young travellers who are open to spontaneous exploration, Skyscanner’s ‘Everywhere’ feature reveals the cheapest destinations globally for preferred travel dates. Additionally, ‘Multi-City Flight Search’ allows travellers to search for up to 6 routes simultaneously when planning their trips, enabling them to find the best combination of flights and timings to suit their budget.

Monika Guwalani, a former investment banker turned travel content creator, highlights the important role of financial freedom when planning your travel. She says, “Embracing travel dreams needs smart money moves. Just a few months ago, I swapped my 9-to-5 job for a digital nomad lifestyle that I lead with financially savvy hacks. There are many ways in which you can embark on your path to wanderlust too, without breaking the bank. Start by building your travel fund like a treasure chest, setting aside a portion each month. As a traveller, I swear by Skyscanner’s tools that help me bag a bargain in many ways. The brand is always coming up with innovative ways to help with travel planning, it launched a ‘Saved’ feature recently on the mobile app, where you can curate your dream destinations with a simple tap of the ‘heart’ button and receive timely alerts on price changes. It’s like having your personal travel assistant, ensuring you’re always in the know.

Opting for destinations during the off-season can also save you money on flights, accommodation, and even attractions. Plus, you’ll often enjoy fewer crowds and a more authentic experience! Mixing and matching the airlines and airports you choose to fly with to and from can also seriously cut costs. Remember, flights don’t always need to be booked as round-trip – embrace flexibility and strategic planning, to keep your budget grounded.”

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George, in his capacity as an intern, diligently oversees the flow of news, assists in the publication of content, and delves into the strategies of social media distribution. He is currently pursuing his studies in Business Administration at the Athens University of Economics and Business.