Be aware: Asian travelers want to go it alone
Asia Pacific travel meta-search site Wego.com. has revealed - not altogether unsurprisingly - that South East Asian travelers are dumping group travel and prefer to go it alone.
A We go-commissioned poll has found that traditional group travel is in decline and Singaporean, Indonesian, Malaysian, Thai, Vietnamese and Filipino travelers now have a preference for traveling on a more individual basis.
Craig Hewett, Wego co-founder and chief commercial officer, said only one in five prefer a package holiday - with an equivalent number entirely spontaneous in their decision-making: "I look out for special offers and will take one of those and go."
Only 14% indicated a preference to travel as part of an organized group."
Respondents were a representative mix in terms of age and status, Wego noted.
A quarter gave Bahasa Indonesia as their preferred language, "reflecting the relative size of that market. They know what they want and for the vast majority it is not a group tour," said Hewett.
Almost half of South East Asian travelers use online travel sites, women accounting for 57%. More then 60% of respondents said they also look to advice from family and friends.
Only a quarter use a travel agency.
Hewitt urged the Australian inbound tourism industry to prioritise Indonesia "which had recorded 100% year on year growth in the volume of (Wego.com) searches for Australian destinations".
He said a "disproportionately high number" of these searches were by users profiled as "early adopters" and "free spenders" - the new growth segment.
by Ian Jarrett