With Memorial Day Weekend beginning tomorrow in the US and clear skies ahead for summer travel in the US and UK, we take the opportunity to look at how travel has changed over the past few years. In today’s Insight Flash, we compare how the different subindustries have fared, and dig into whether ABNB has been able to continue to ride the tide of changing travel habits.
The year-over-year growth for Travel in the UK has been much stronger than in the US, with all of the major subindustries more than doubling the number of transactions seen in calendar 2022Q1. As our data reflects payments and many travel companies don’t book revenue until the travel is completed, this may serve partly as a forward indicator going into the summer. On a longer-term view, in the UK Airline and Lodging transactions are about equivalent to what they were in 2019, with Cruise transactions down -16% and OTA transactions down -20%. In the US, OTA and Airline transactions are up slightly from 2019 levels, with Lodging down -5%, Casino Lodging down -10%, and Cruise transactions down -23%.
One of the major changes in consumer behavior during the pandemic was travelers choosing to stay in private homes instead of crowded hotels. Services like Airbnb benefitted from increased bookings. This trend has stuck, especially in Northern Ireland where Airbnb spend among residents is up 268% in Q1 versus 2019 (although interestingly overall Lodging spend is up at a high 38%). Throughout the UK, Airbnb spend is up at least 70% versus three years ago, while besides Northern Ireland overall Lodging spend is up less than 10%. Although Airbnb spend isn’t up quite as much in the US as it is in Northern Ireland, it has grown over 140% in the last three years among those living in the Midwest, South, and Northeast. In the West, it is up “only” 96%. Lodging spend growth was 10-20% in each region over the same period.
Although the percentage of new shoppers has slowed somewhat from summer 2020, 25-30% of Airbnb customers in the UK were new to the site in the first four months of 2022. The percentage was similar, though ~3% higher in the US.