Survey of Latin American travelers reveals travel expectations


The survey revealed 5 key findings that the travel industry can use to advance the recovery of the sector affected by the pandemic.

The new survey tells us what the Latin American traveler is thinking as the industry begins to show signs of recovery, which are driven by the lifting of some travel restrictions.

“Travelers from Latin America are eager to travel again. Essential and leisure travel are leading the recovery in the region, with domestic travel recovering at a faster pace due to travel restrictions, ”said Guillermo Prosper vice president of customer service and product support & general manager of Sabre Montevideo. “The results of our survey show the impact that the Covid-19 pandemic is having on the expectations and priorities of travelers in the region. Companies that adapt more quickly to these changing expectations will be more successful in their recovery efforts. ”

The 5 key findings of the Sabre survey about the sentiment of the Latin American traveler are:

Finding 1: Many Latin Americans are eager to return to travel once the restrictions are lifted.

Although 20% of those surveyed indicated that they would not travel unless a vaccine is available, and that 11% do not plan to travel soon, the survey shows positive signs for the travel industry. 50% of those surveyed indicated that they plan to travel within the next 6 months once the restrictions are lifted. Among those surveyed, 14% indicated that they plan to travel immediately, as soon as the restrictions are lifted, while 21% indicated that they would travel within 1 to 3 months.

The survey shows that, of all the age groups surveyed, those between 18 and 39 years old are the ones who most want to fly soon, with 38% indicating that they would travel within three months of the opening of flights and lifting of restrictions.

The country with the most positive sentiment in terms of travel was Mexico, with 52% of respondents expecting to travel within 3 months once restrictions are lifted.

Peru is the most cautious, with a total of 42% of respondents noting that they would not travel unless a vaccine is available.

Finding 2: The type of transport influences. Latin American travelers will be careful when choosing how they will travel to their next destination.

Of all those surveyed, 36% indicated that traveling by bus had the highest risk of contagion, followed by air transport with 27%, and cruise with 25%. Leased car represents the lowest risk for those surveyed, with only 2% indicating it as a risky means of transport in terms of contagion.

Respondents from Brazil indicated that traveling by plane presents the highest risk of contagion (35%), followed closely by 32% who believe that the most risky means of transport is traveling by cruise, and 23% believe that it is the bus.

Finding 3: While travelers expect better health security measures and flexibility in flight cancellations or rescheduling, a good deal remains the main factor.

When the respondents were asked to select the determining factors in order of importance when booking their next flight, health measures, flexibility in flight cancellations or rescheduling, and a good offer or price, they showed similar results, although price was the most determining factor. .

Among those surveyed, 36% indicated that the most important factor when booking their next flight would be a good deal or competitive price. At the same time, 30% indicated that they would be strict sanitary measures, and 28% gave greater importance to flexible policies in cancellations or rescheduling of flights.

In Brazil, 50% of those surveyed chose price as the most important factor, followed by Mexico with 38%.

In Peru, 52% selected strict sanitary measures as the main factor when booking their next flight, the same in Argentina with 38% of respondents.

In Uruguay, 40% of those surveyed chose flexibility in flight cancellations or rescheduling as the main factor.

Finding 4: The Latin American traveler has high expectations of seeing better sanitary measures, but the highest priority was given to social distancing and the mandatory use of masks for travelers before other measures.

When asked to rank among various sanitary measures in order of importance, respondents identified social distancing, mask use, and better cleaning / sanitation as the top three most important in air travel. Travelers want social distancing even on flights, with 61% of respondents indicating that they would cancel their flight if they knew it was full.

For the hospitality industry, the priority is on cleaning / sanitizing and social distancing.

Interestingly, for both aviation and hospitality sectors, respondents indicated temperature controls and contactless check-in as the least important measures listed in the survey.

Finding 5: Although travelers from Latin America and the Caribbean seem to be eager to travel, many will choose a destination close to home.

More than half (56%) of those surveyed indicated that they would opt for a domestic or short-haul flight (less than 8 hours of flight) when making their next reservation, while 22% would choose a long-haul flight (more than 8 hours).

Respondents from Mexico and Peru would opt for a short-haul flight, 72% and 71% respectively.

Respondents from Argentina and Uruguay showed the greatest inclination towards long-haul flights, with 37% and 38% respectively – almost double that of other Latin American countries.