Expedia’s travel saving tips post-pandemic
As Kiwis look forward to the new year, Expedia’s 2021 Travel Trends Report, reveals the trends that will help Kiwis get travelling again and key saving hacks. By analysing Expedia data and insights from the Airlines Reporting Corporation (ARC), the report equips travellers with top tips and inspiration for booking travel in the new normal.
Airfare booking hacks for 2021
Based on 2020 ARC data, average ticket prices (ATPs) for domestic flights hit their lowest in late April when both Australia and New Zealand went into their early stages of lockdown. Prices started to recover from June, however ATPs are still 20-30% lower year-on-year. Meanwhile, ATPs for international flights spiked in mid-April and continued an upward trend before slowly starting to decline in September. However, with international travel still on hold, prices are still more than double year-on-year.
With domestic still a key focus across the Tasman, the analysis shows that while ATPs are historically low for domestic flights, prices may rise during peak travel periods such as the summer holiday. To get the best deal, knowing when to book and departure timing is still key to unlocking savings.
Ideal day of the week to book: Sunday.
- Past data indicates for both domestic and international flights, booking on a Sunday, not a Friday could save travellers around 25% on domestic airfares and almost 15% for international flights.
Ideal day of the week to travel: Thursday or Tuesday.
- Past data indicates that for domestic flights, starting your trip on a Thursday, can save almost 20% compared to departing on a Sunday.
- Past data indicates that for international flights, start your trip on a Tuesday or Thursday, not Sunday to save nearly 20%.
Hotel savings tips
Looking at lodging trends, prices dropped in March as the country went into lockdown; but as restrictions eased, average daily rates (ADRs) started to normalise as travel slowly resumed. With doors still closed to international visitors and the industry relying on the domestic market, prices are slightly higher compared to last year^.
As Kiwis continue to plan their future getaways, based on Expedia data, here are some simple tips to consider to unlock savings on select accommodation:
- For domestic holidays, the lowestADR for accommodation tends to occur on a Monday, where Kiwis can save around 10% versus staying on the most expensive day, which is a Thursday.
- For international trips, the cheapest day also falls on a Monday where travellers can save just over 10%compared to staying on a Thursday or Friday, which usually has the highest ADR.
The 2021 bucket list
Looking ahead to 2021, wanderlust is high on New Zealander’s agenda. Many are being optimistic in the potential travel bubble with the Pacific Islands, as all-time favourites Fiji and Cook Islands make the top five searched destinations for next year.
While Kiwis wait for the skies to open, many are still seeking an adventurous and outdoor escape in 2021. Whether it’s by the water or within the mountains, data indicates Kiwis are hoping to explore outside of the usual suspects, with Bay of Plenty, Nelson and Canterbury being top considerations.
Shift in priorities
Trust and confidence will play a pivotal role in shaping travel in 2021. Expedia data shows Kiwis are prioritising flexibility now more than ever, with refundable bookings up 10% compared to 2019.
With flexibility top of mind for travellers, Expedia lodging data shows average daily rates for refundable hotel booking in 2020 were almost 15% cheaper compared to 2019, showing flexibility has become more affordable.
Health and safety are also concerns for Kiwis, with Expedia’s Summer Travel Report revealing more than a third (39%) are taking health and safety into consideration when planning their trips. To make it easier for Kiwis to find suitable options for their travel needs, Expedia’s new ‘Enhanced Cleaning’ filter helps narrow the search results on properties and activities taking additional steps to clean and sanitise.
Justine Yusi, ANZ Communications Manager, Expedia, comments: “As New Zealand continues to keep the virus at bay, we’re hopeful of what 2021 will bring. We all know Kiwis are avid travellers and as the Trans-Tasman bubble continues to open and with other potential green lanes in the pipeline, Kiwis’ love for travel will be back to its former glory.” www.expedia.co.nz