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Shared Experiences: The new love language of Millennial and Gen Z travelers in APAC

Millennial and Gen Z travelers

APAC’s Millennial and Gen Z travelers embrace travel as their love language, with a focus on shared experiences and social media connectivity, as revealed by Klook’s latest Travel Pulse research.

Singapore – In 2024, Millennial and Gen Z travelers in Asia Pacific (APAC) are declaring shared experiences through travel as their new love language, with almost every (9 in 10) traveler intending to pursue travel with their loved ones. Klook‘s latest Travel Pulse1 research also reveals that 3 in 5 travelers are set to splurge on 2024 adventures, dedicating up to half their budget to experiences and activities despite rising costs from global inflation2.

For Millennials and Gen Zs, travel is more than a holiday; it is the ultimate canvas for building connections and creating shared memories that solidify bonds. Klook COO and Co-Founder Eric Gnock Fah observes that these travel trends are reflective of a post-pandemic world, where the pandemic-induced isolation and increased digitization of lives have left people yearning for connection. “As we move past the pandemic and era of revenge travel, we observe a transformative shift in travel dynamics. It’s no longer just a journey; it’s the embodiment of a new love language — shared experiences. Travel has become an essential outlet, offering individuals the chance to connect genuinely with themselves, their loved ones, and the world around them.”

Klook Travel Pulse - Jan 2024 Infographic

Connecting through meaningful journeys: travelers prioritize experiences over expenses

64% of Millennials and Gen Zs are increasing their travel budgets in 2024, with nearly half of them willing to spend up to 50% or more on their holidays. The focus for travelers continues to be on experiences that promise meaningful connections with their companions, with 69% of them booking activities before taking flight.

The availability of experiences and their uniqueness are among the top consideration factors for travelers when planning a holiday. Nature and outdoor adventures take the lead at 59%, followed by the thrill of theme parks (53%), and the cultural richness of museums and historical sites (51%).

Millennials and Gen Zs trade solitude for shared adventures

In 2024, Millennials and Gen Zs across Asia Pacific will break away from pandemic habits of me-time and solitary routines of self-care, and will actively choose to venture back on the road to connect and discover with their loved ones.

9 out of 10 APAC travelers want to pursue trips with others, be it family, partners, or close friends. 30% are opting for getaways with partners (1 in 3), while 26% prefer family adventures (1 in 4), and 21% choose to venture with friends (1 in 5). Millennials also lean towards travel with their partners, while Gen Zs prioritize friend group travel.

65% of travelers are pursuing shared adventures through more frequent, shorter holidays rather than extended getaways, to maximize creating these core memories together. New destinations are also on the horizon for 70% of travelers in APAC, with the top destinations on the wishlist being Japan, South Korea, Thailand, and Singapore.

Social media is integral for shared experiences, driving shareability factor and travel intent

For most travelers (96%), posting about their journeys on social media platforms is more than just documentation—it’s to be shared with others. This act of online sharing becomes a means of capturing and cherishing memories with their social circles, as these shared experiences take root as constants in digital lives.

Social media continues to be a key source of travel inspiration, with Instagram (77%) and YouTube (77%) leading the way as primary enablers of wanderlust. 1 in 3 travelers engage with travel content daily and more than half regularly share their travel experiences on social media.

Trust dynamics in online travel recommendations are evolving, with non-celebrity figures being the most trusted source of recommendations, reflecting a broader trend towards authentic and relatable content. Online voices continue to be of considerable influence for travel inspiration, as over 80% base their travel bookings on recommendations from content creators, underscoring the pivotal role of digital influencers in shaping travel choices.

Spring is the season of love and shared experiences, capturing the most hearts for travelers in APAC

For many travelers (65%), climate or season plays a huge part in the shared experience of travel. Spring in the early part of the year is the most popular season across APAC, and nearly half of travelers have booked travel within the first three months of 2024. Nature and outdoor activities are among the top ways travelers aim to fully enjoy this coveted season. However, preferences diverge across countries, presenting a diverse tapestry of seasonal affections.

Spring is most favored by travelers from Malaysia and Indonesia, while travelers from Australia and the Philippines want to embrace the warmth of Summer. Taiwan and Korea share an affection for the vibrant hues of Autumn, and Winter claims the spotlight for travelers from India, Thailand, and Singapore.

With experiences and social media fueling how travelers express this new love language in the coming year, Klook anticipates a year of renewed enthusiasm for travel, towards new destinations and things to do.

[1] The Klook Travel Pulse survey was conducted in November 2023 through Milieu with a total of 2,600 respondents across 13 markets including Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam, South Korea, Japan, Australia, Mainland China, India, and Indonesia
[2] 2024 Global Business Travel Forecast published by Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) and CWT

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

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