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Asia-Pacific is the Most Requested Long-Haul Holiday Destination

Online training provider, Travel Uni, carried out a series of ‘Frontline Finding’ research to find out how frontline travel staff have been impacted during the epidemic and how the industry is adapting as travel gradually returns.

400 UK travel agents took part in the research, who were asked for their top four most requested regions. 

The Asia-Pacific region, Indian Ocean and Africa received the most enquiries with 30%, followed by southeast Asia (23%); Australia and New Zealand (21%); the Indian subcontinent (8%); China, Japan and Korea (8%).

Not surprisingly the UK staycation and European markets lead overall, whilst other long-haul destinations highlighted include, the Caribbean (54%), and the Middle East (26%) and North America (39%).

A third of those surveyed expect ‘international travel to pick up significantly’ from Q4 of 2021 this year and similar numbers for this to occur in Q1 of next year, showing the impact of current travel restrictions easing as the summer progresses.

Key workplace findings revealed that 70% of travel agents were working from home due to COVID, 49% were working reduced hours and 14% were job searching with 37% still furloughed overall.

PATA’s Training Spokesperson Ian Dockreay said: “There has been much speculation about the impact on the industry in the last year and how travel will resume but research like this is based on fact, from frontline staff themselves. Insights like these are of great interest to our members as it helps shape training, sales and marketing plans and give reassurance that their destinations are in demand”.

The survey has also revealed how vital the role travel agents play still is in booking holidays. Ranking client needs in order of importance, ‘reassurance’, ‘advice’ and ‘knowledge’ came ahead of ‘price’ and ‘availability’ as the key benefits customers seek in using an agent to book their travel. “this result clearly shows how much the public need travel agents’ expertise to guide them in their options and choices,” added Dockreay.