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July 21, 2024

Asia Pacific Tourism Recovery: a Mixed Picture, But Visa Easing and More Air Capacity Would Help

Visa Easing and More Air

Experts convened by PATA also show that digitalisation, localisation, seamless travel payments and tourism aligned to values are redefining the new Asia Pacific tourism landscape

New consumer preferences and habits have emerged in the first half of 2024 in an Asia Pacific tourism sector which is recovering from the pandemic years in an uneven manner.

The post-Covid tourism surge from 2022 was initially powered by more affluent tourists seeking relaxation amid nature, user convenience, sustainable and authentic local tourism experiences, all enabled by heightened digitisation of travel.

Those trends have since evolved. Travel experts speaking at the Pacific Asia Travel Association’s “Navigating the Path to Tourism Recovery” webinar on 6 June said that megatrends such as value for money, seamless booking and payments, and travel that aligns more to consumer values are now the hallmarks of post-pandemic tourism in the region.

Caroline Bremner, Senior Head of Travel Research at Euromonitor International, said destinations that deliver safety, relaxation, value, good quality food and drink and access to natural attractions would continue to do well. She noted that younger (Gen Z) travellers, much preferred personalised, authentic local experiences, with price not so much of a consideration, relative to much older baby boomers who seek value.

Free cancellations, easy digital payments, reliable user reviews, free upgrades and personalised recommendations (especially from family or friends), turn lookers to bookers, said Ms Bremner.

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