Looking at the Data behind Experience Holidays

  • Issue no. 3

With 65% of holidaymakers planning to ‘go big’ this year, there’s a tangible need for adventure among holiday goers in 2022. According to ABTA, 65% of holiday-makers say that the limited opportunities for travel have made their holidays more important than ever before. ABTA refers to this as the ‘catch-up consumer’ – those who missed out during the pandemic and are now passionate about making up for their lost trips by seeking dedicated experience holidays in 2022.

TUI, jet2holidays, Travelbag, and Barrhead Travel also recognise this influx of catch-up consumers, seeing more customers than ever opt for specific holiday experiences rather than a more relaxed generic getaway.

This spirit of adventure is clear in the numbers – 37% of holiday-makers want to visit a country they’ve never been to before, and in a survey of 12,000 travelers in 12 countries, it was found that 65% of respondents are planning to ‘go big’ on their next trip – this has led to Expedia calling 2022 the year of the GOAT, or the ‘greatest of all trips’. Fundamentally, people are looking for an incredible experience this summer.

So what are the most popular experiences travelers are looking for in 2022, and how can marketers in the travel and hospitality industry cater to these?


While the safari industry did take a hit during the pandemic, as reported by a survey taken by Safari Booking, ‘most safari tour operators have experienced a significant recovery’. African Travel has seen a significant increase in whole families booking to go on safari together – an increase of 40% from pre-pandemic numbers. And it’s not just the traditional African savannah safaris that are growing in popularity – G Adventures reports that trips to the Galapagos and the Arctic are their most popular for 2022.

Extreme Expeditions

For those keen for a physical challenge, a wide range of extreme expeditions have been introduced in 2022, giving holiday-makers the chance to seek thrills like never before. As reported by CN Traveller, Black Tomato is offering quad biking safaris from the Okavango Delta in Botswana to the Makgadikgadi Salt Pans; Secret Compass is organising abseiling adventures in Venezuela and treks through the Wakhan Corridor in Afghanistan, and Cookson Adventures is taking people deep-sea diving in the Cocos Islands, which has some of the highest aggregations of sharks to be found anywhere on the planet.

Wonders of the World

When people think of ‘experiences’, they think of ‘once in a lifetime’. This mentality has seen a huge surge in travelers heading towards the wonders of the world – flights to Jordan’s Petra and bookings to cities near Machu Picchu are all on the increase. 

Tilly Redshaw
Marketing & Social Media

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