Monday 13 June 2022
– The UK is the preferred destination for travelers to Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa
After easing COVID-19 restrictions, strong return on cruise, bus and train costs in 2022
A recent report from the Mastercard Institute of Economics found that bookings for business and leisure travel have exceeded their pre-pandemic level, while spending on cruise lines, buses and trains has seen sharp increases this year. The new report, entitled Travel in 2022: Trends and Transformations, presents important studies on global travel conditions in 37 markets in the post-vaccination phase and those that followed easing restrictions during the pandemic period.
According to the report, if flight booking trends continue at their current pace, an additional 115 million passengers from Eastern Europe, the Middle East and North Africa will travel in 2022, compared to last year. After in-depth studies conducted within the Mastercard2 network of publicly available travel data, aggregate and anonymous sales activity, the report went further in analyzing key elements of traveler travel and came up with the following important findings by April 2022:
• Business and leisure travel has surpassed pre-pandemic levels
The global travel recovery was of great importance to the consumer in most phases of the pandemic, and the percentage of global leisure travel bookings exceeded 25% at the end of April, compared to the same period in 2019, and bookings for short-term and medium-term. leisure travel increased by 25% and 27%, respectively, while global business travel bookings jumped, for the first time in March, to levels exceeding those before the pandemic, and the number of long-haul flights recorded especially an increase. over 10% in April. The return to jobs came to give the travel movement an extra boost, as the Middle East witnessed an accelerated recovery in international travel bookings from mid-2021, following the launch of Covid-19 virus vaccination campaigns. and easing travel restrictions in the western hemisphere, and this recovery was strengthened As national airlines in the Middle East are increasing their scheduled flights to more destinations. However, business trips to Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa grew at a much slower pace, with short-term bookings prompting recovery, but they did not exceed 2019 levels, with the exception of March 2022, while medium-term bookings and domestic ones remained below 2019 levels. This is 16% and 40%, respectively, starting in April 2022.
• In-country travel options continue to be a top priority for consumers
With the onset of the pandemic, consumers in Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa preferred to head for domestic travel, and although the recovery was sporadic, domestic bookings increased and their levels at the end of November 2020 doubled those of . before the pandemic, and collapsed in January 2021, and rose again more than 20% in February 2021, compared to pre-pandemic levels, and declined again in mid-2021, before a more sustained recovery began. stable, exceeding pre-pandemic levels since February 2022.
• Expenditure recovery in severely hit transport industries
Recent spending indicators reveal increasing easing with mass travel, as global cruise spending rose 62 percentage points from January to the end of April, though still below 2019 levels. Bus traffic has returned to pre-pandemic levels. while passenger costs on rail are less than 7%, and road travel by car remains attractive, with costs for transit tariffs and car rental increasing by about 19% and 12%, respectively. Consumer spending in Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa on rail travel has surpassed the rest of the world since January 2021 and the region has seen a much higher steady growth over the same period in 2019. The rental sector of cars has also recorded a gradual recovery of tourism expenditures, exceeding levels from year to year. 2019, and seemed to be more stable starting in January 2022.
Focus travel expenses on experiences rather than things
Most of the expenses of tourists from all over the world, in the best periods of the tourist year, are focused on their experiences, instead of buying souvenirs from the places where they land, and the expenses for these experiences currently exceed 34% compared to 2019- ën. and one of the most prominent areas that witnessed significant increases in spending: food and beverage outlets (72%), theme parks, museums, concerts and other recreational activities (35%). In the UK, spending growth doubled monthly in 2022, compared to 2019 levels, and its rate in April reached 140 per cent, and the global trend towards the experience economy included Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa, despite half a year delay from the rest of the world. In South Africa, for example, although spending on goods and experience there took a similar advantage, growth in spending on experience continued to advance compared to 2019 levels, recording 20 percentage points higher than spending on goods that by January 2022.
• Restriction easing has redrawn the tourism map for 2022
It is not surprising that the ability to travel and the amenities during it constitute an influential factor in the issue of booking destinations, despite the decisions taken in 2022, which contributed to the easing of movement restrictions in most parts of the world. , except. of some parts of Asia and the Pacific. The result was that the United States, the United Kingdom, Switzerland, Spain and the Netherlands have now become major destinations for tourists worldwide5, while travelers from Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa preferred the United Kingdom to be their first destination. during the period of continued recovery more than the United States and this trend encouraged the launch of “Freedom Day”. Britain to lift restrictions in July 2021. The European continent has become home to most of the top ten favorite destinations for travelers from Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
“Like any airline, travel recovery has faced opposing and rear winds, and with the ‘Great Rebalance’ now happening around the world, this mobility is extremely important to bring it back to life.” said Bricklin Dwyer, chief economist at Mastercard and president. of the Mastercard Economic Institute Pre-pandemic and perhaps the resilience and determination of the consumer to return to normalcy and make up for lost time is what gives us optimism that the recovery is moving forward, despite all the obstacles that may arise during street. ”
Comprehensive support for the tourism and travel sector
MasterCard is committed to providing customers and businesses of all sizes with security, comfort and value while adapting to travel returns. The Mastercard Travel & Lifestyle Services platform offers travel plans, various offers, booking guarantees and 24/7 goalkeeper support. Priceless.com offers, while the traveler is at his / her travel destination, access to special experiences, benefits and offers such as Mastercard Travel Rewards, while the Mastercard Easy Savings platform offers business travelers. “Small businesses” offer discounts and purchasing power in digital business service. Providers, fine dining restaurants, international retailers and hotels.
Mastercard is committed to helping the global tourism industry recover and welcomes travelers with a range of services, from reporting and analytical market research, to providing reliable data-driven studies that help understand changing consumer trends. to the launch of marketing solutions and customer engagement strategies that promote loyalty. For the brand, bookings have been maximized. The Tourism Innovation Center was recently launched in Spain to develop products and solutions created specifically to support a sustainable and inclusive return to travel through innovation, research and collaboration in the respective ecosystem.
To view the full report, “Journey to 2022: Trends and Transformations,” please click here. Here you can find other reports from the MasterCard Institute of Economics.