Staff Reporter –
Thomas Cook India, India’s leading integrated travel services company, and its Group Company SOTC Travel Ltd., have jointly surveyed over 2500 customers across India’s key metros like Delhi-NCR, Mumbai, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Chennai and mini-metros like Pune and Tier 2 & 3 source markets, including Jaipur, Lucknow, Madurai, Kochi, Indore, Cuttack, Nagpur, Ahmedabad and Surat.
The survey reveals insightful customer data, behaviour and travel trends with UAE (Dubai-Abu Dhabi) and Expo 2020 Dubai emerging as a clear driver of international demand for Q4 2021:
- Significant Travel Desire: 85% of respondents keen to travel (77% International, 61% domestic).
- Over 60% indicate clear intent to visit UAE with Expo 2020 Dubai topping the leader board of favourites; also cricket fixtures of IPL & T20.
With re-opening of borders, vaccine acceptance/easing of restrictions, Indians are displaying strong travel appetite for UAE (Dubai & Abu Dhabi). Expo 2020 Dubai, starting October 1, 2021 and continuing upto March 31, 2022, has created a significant opportunity – with over 47% of respondents indicating keen interest to visit the event atleast once this year.
Mr. Rajeev Kale, President & Country Head – Holidays, MICE, Visa, Thomas Cook (India) Limited said, “Our survey highlights strong travel demand for the last quarter 2021, with 60% customers indicating UAE with Expo 2020 Dubai as their top preference; followed by the cricket fixtures of IPL/T20. The survey further reveals strong appeal across range of traveller segments – from India’s millennials, families, students, and business to our MICE corporate and across India’s metros as well as Tier2-3 source markets. For industry associations and businesses, Expo 2020 Dubai offers an invaluable platform for ideation, R&D, business and networking. MICE being a strong segment driver, we have designed unique programmes – tailor made and co-curated based on the interests of specific corporates across Insurance, Automobile, Pharma, e-Commerce, Start-ups & Trade Associations. We are also seeing interest in gala dinners and events at the Expo site itself. In addition to Expo 2020, the exciting cricket fixtures of the T20 World Cup & IPL, have allowed us to combine the two opportunities with a compelling product for the India market.”
Mr. Daniel D’souza President & Country Head, SOTC Travel said, “As per our survey there is an encouraging travel desire and confidence amongst customers pan-India. The survey reveals positive interest for families to witness this once-in-a-lifetime global mega-event. Expo 2020 Dubai, length of stay trends highlight, customers are looking at longer stay compared to short trips in the past.Over 57% of respondents said they would visit the Expo again along with an increased willingness to spend.”
He added, “With significant interest for a 4 – 7 nights stay, we have curated attractive 5 and 6 nights Expo itineraries with Single Day/ Multi Day Tickets included along with a Guided Tour of Expo on some itineraries. Our offers also include experiences like Sundowner Yacht Cruise, Ain Dubai, Pink Limousine Rides, Dubai Museum, Bridge & Heritage tour of the QE II amongst others and Luxury experiences like, hi-tea at the Burj Khalifa, desert camping and a VIP Desert Safari with a Private Butler are also part of our offers. To reassure customers, our products are inbuilt with TravShield – comprehensive Safety Commitment & Assured Safe Travel Program in association with Apollo Clinics.”