Local Market and Neighborhood Tours, Russia World Cup and F&B Experiences Are Biggest Summer Travel Trends, According to GetYourGuide’s Summer 2018 Preview
Berlin, May 15, 2018 — GetYourGuide, the leading booking platform for travel activities, today released its Summer 2018 U.S. Travel Preview. The report’s findings, drawn from GetYourGuide booking data between Memorial Day Weekend (May 28) and Labor Day Weekend (Sept. 2) 2018, reveal several trends in U.S. summer-travel preferences. Here are the key findings:
Where are Americans going this summer?
The most popular destinations for U.S. travelers this summer are:
Greece is back. Greece has always been a popular travel destination thanks to great weather, pristine beaches, amazing food and an abundance of historical sites, but the economic crisis and negative publicity kept American travelers away for several years. As Greece’s rebound picked up steam last year, a new generation of tech-savvy tour guides has emerged with a modern spin on seeing this naturally beautiful country. Greek wine tastings, catamaran cruises, heritage guided tours, Greek food and cooking experiences and island-hopping across the more than 6,000 islands.
The Russian ice is thawing. America’s cold political relationship with Russia is not preventing Americans from attending the World Cup, and discovering what the country has to offer while there. Russia is showing the greatest growth for Americans traveling this summer, up 400 percent compared to 2017. More than half (59 percent) of those activities will happen during the World Cup.
What are Americans doing?
Don’t believe the stereotype: Americans like to walk. Walking Tours are the most popular activity among Americans planning the summer ahead; in fact, they’re twice as popular as the No. 2, Bus & Minivan Tours. Rounding out the top five are No. 3, Sightseeing Attractions; No. 4, Museum Tickets and No. 5, Art & Museum Tours.
“Local Markets & Neighborhood Tours” are this summer’s hottest vacation activity. “The global demand for authentic, hyper-local experiences is driving this trend on GetYourGuide and throughout the entire travel world,” said Johannes Reck, co-founder and CEO of GetYourGuide. “We support this healthy cultural exchange: our platform empowers ‘entrepreneur tour guides’--local experts with a passion for a hobby, history or culture of a destination--to share that passion with a global audience. It’s no surprise that some of our best-rated tours fall into this category.”
Food & Beverage experiences are another big trend for summer 2018.Four of the 10 fastest growing segments are F&B related and include: Wine Tasting & Wine Tours (up 226 percent), Pub Crawls & Bar Tours (up 189 percent), Dinner Packages (up 171 percent) and Cooking Classes (up 137 percent). Added Reck, “Customers of ours who follow their stomachs through a new destination or culture often report the strongest feelings of satisfaction, connection--and likeliness to return.”
Be a Savvy Traveler This Summer With These Strategies
1. Purchase skip-the-line tickets. Increasingly, travelers who buy tickets online are granted skip-the-line privileges at major attractions, often at no extra cost. For notoriously impatient Americans, this is welcome news--which is why skip-the-line tickets are now among the most popular bookings on GetYourGuide.
2. Know when to go: For most attractions, crowds are usually sparsest during the week, so travelers should avoid weekends. An influx of people vacationing over a holiday or during a special event will usually result in longer lines, so avoid Bastille Day in Paris or July 4th in Washington.
In collaboration with Hurikat (www.hurikat.com), an online community of users dedicated to avoiding waiting in lines, GetYourGuide analyzed average wait times and customer reviews for major global attractions. Below are the wait times to expect and the best weeks to visit each this summer.
3. Look for tours and attractions that offer a time slot: GetYourGuide provides attractions the technology they need to distribute visitors evenly throughout the day with timed tickets. This prevents lost time waiting in line as well as unnecessary crowding inside.
4. Avoid Rush Hour: For many attractions, arriving at opening or during the last two hours before closing will result in the best chance of a smooth entry. When in doubt, call the attraction and ask their advice on the best time to arrive.
5. Experience a destination in a new way with alternative tours: Thanks to the rise in entrepreneur tour guides, there has never been more choice for unique tours. Going to Paris for the seventh time? Consider the Dark Hearts & Murder Mysteries Walking Tour, learn how to make macarons, or take a daytrip to a part of France you have yet to visit, such as this Chateau Tour of the Loire Valley.
6. Be a tourist in your own backyard:
Spice up a date night or girls’ night out with a walking tour, cooking class, wine tasting or restaurant tour.
Cure your kids’ summer boredom and and stop the summer brain drain with an educational tour.
GetYourGuide’s co-founder and CEO Johannes Reck is available to discuss this report as well as any other travel topic you are working on.
Insights on growth in destinations and tour categories were derived from GetYourGuide bookings data for U.S. travelers who booked between January 1 and April 10, 2018 for activities taking place between May 28 and September 2, 2018, compared with data sets for similar timeframes in 2017. Insights on attraction waiting times, and optimal weeks to visit, were drawn from historical data provided by Hurikat (www.hurikat.com), combined with GetYourGuide historical customer satisfaction data.
GetYourGuide is the leading booking platform for travel activities. Powered by a global team of over 400 travel experts, GetYourGuide helps tourists find the best things to do wherever they’re headed — including skip-the-line tickets to the world’s most iconic attractions, walking tours by top local experts, immersive food and beverage tours, cooking and craft classes, bucket-list experiences and niche offerings travelers won’t find anywhere else. GetYourGuide was founded in 2009 and now offers more than 34,000 things to do in over 7,600 destinations across the globe. Travelers from more than 155 countries have booked over 15 million tours, activities and attraction tickets through the platform. The company is based in Berlin, Germany and has offices in 14 countries.