As restrictions continue to ease for the hospitality sector, we at Customer Perceptions felt it was an opportune time to conduct a survey across our nationwide base of consumers. We wanted to determine consumers’ opinion on ‘Staycations’ (Yes, we also don’t like that word) and what their intentions were in utilising the Hospitality sector. We have discovered some interesting hospitality trends for 2021.
The data and results uncovered were engrossingly insightful. Overall, the survey affirmed that the past 18 months have had an impact on consumers’ intentions of holidaying in the future and when they intend in returning to the Hospitality sector.
Where are people holidaying?
Unsurprisingly, the majority of respondents were keen to holiday this year. Not exactly breaking news that people enjoy holidays. The surprise was the willingness to trade in sun holidays and travel agents for staycations this year. In fact, 87.2% of respondents are hoping to holiday in Ireland. Of the 12.8% of respondents that are not holidaying in Ireland this year, the main reason was the price of staying in Ireland, or that they were planning on travelling abroad.
Would you consider holidaying abroad in 2021?
With the updates on Covid Certs, Green Lists and a slow opening of foreign travel, we examined how respondents would feel about holidaying further abroad this year to a foreign destination. Almost 40% of respondents said “No” that they would not be travelling abroad this year. The remainder were more open to this, with some citing Yes, but only if certain criteria was filled. 35% were happy to travel abroad if the restrictions were eased, travel was permitted and they were vaccinated. 9% of respondents were happy to travel if restrictions were eased and travel was permitted. However, only 4% of respondents were happy to travel abroad regardless of vaccine status or restrictions.
Uncertainty is a big part in the reason people are wary of travelling outside of Ireland. It is important to realise that restrictions could change on a whim if your holiday destination has a spike that moves it from the Green list to the Red list. Evidently the global vaccine rollout reduces the possibility of rapid circumstance changes. This will potentially alleviate some peoples fear of travelling. This could lead to a shift in the hospitality trends coming into 2022.
Biggest Hospitality Trends for Travelling In Ireland
The number one factor when deciding where to travel to in Ireland is the price. Followed by the location and journey time. Only 22 respondents determined destination popularity to impact their decision on where to travel in Ireland. The majority of people in Ireland would usually stay in a hotel with 196 respondents typically staying in a hotel. Compared to the second highest (101 respondents) choice of Self-Catering. Bed & Breakfasts were third most popular but with another large drop in popularity with only 43 people opting to stay if given a choice.
Even though destination popularity isn’t likely to influence destination choice, the location of the hotel is the most important factor for when choosing where to stay for the desired destination. However, when asked about why they stay in a particular hotel or B&B comfort was the number one option.
Hotel Statistics In Covid-19
48% of our respondents have stayed in a Hotel since the start of the pandemic in March 2020. Customers had an even split on whether Covid-19 restrictions had impacted their stay. 31.5% felt that the restrictions had a positive impact on their stay opposed to 34.3% of respondents found it negative. The remaining 34.3% felt the restrictions had no impact on their hotel stay. A surprising 48.7% of respondents said they would regularly write an online review for accommodation, restaurants and pubs after a visit.
21.6% of the respondents said they would visit a pub monthly this year while 15% would visit weekly. Another 12.5% intended to visit the pub at least once every two weeks. One of the main factors impacting dining habits of our respondents is that they did not want to eat outdoors. 63.4% of people were satisfied with the restrictions of 6 people per table. Although the respondents were far more likely to go to a restaurant than a pub. 19% intended to visit a restaurant weekly while another 19% intended to go every two weeks. However, 38.1% planned on visiting a restaurant monthly.
Impacts on the Hospitality Sector in Ireland
The tourism in Ireland has plummeted with travel restrictions and quarantines putting international tourists off travelling. However, in the same vein Irish tourists have decided to explore the beauties of Ireland opposed to jetting off to Lanzarote to get a tan. Inevitably international tourism will see a rapid rise in the near future as restrictions continue to ease. However, having a positive experience holidaying in Ireland may see an increase in Irish residents holidaying within the country. Hospitality trends for 2021 look positive for internal travel across Ireland.
Combine this with fact that destination popularity isn’t an important factor in the majority of respondents’ decision making process. This could see quiet areas of rural Ireland receiving a boost in the hospitality sector if the act of going on a “staycation” remains popular after all travel restrictions are lifted.
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