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Nearly 50 per cent of Kiwis planning to splurge on a holiday

Following a challenging year where for many, every aspect of life was impacted, Expedia’s annual Vacation Deprivation report reveals Kiwis are planning to go big on holidays in 2021.

After taking just 13 days of leave last year, New Zealanders are making it a priority to take advantage of their days off more than ever, with survey results showing they plan to take an extra week (five days) of leave in 2021 (total of 18 days).

Despite being one of the more fortunate countries during the global pandemic, it’s evident Kiwis are missing their travel escapades more than ever. Surprisingly, historical data shows Kiwis have been taking more leave each year over the past five years, however, their holiday deprivation continues to increase. This year, more than half (57 per cent) of Kiwis report feeling holiday deprived, a two per cent increase from the previous year.

As the hopes for future travel in 2021 grows, Expedia is already seeing a positive shift in Kiwis’ attitudes towards travel. Data indicates almost a quarter (24 per cent) have already booked in holidays for the year ahead, while 25 per cent are planning on taking more holidays to make up for 2020.

New Zealanders are also getting ready to fulfill their pent-up travel desires by splurging on their bucket list trips. Whether it’s trying a new activity or seeking out a place untraveled, 47 per cent are willing to spend more on their bucket list holiday than originally planned, while 46% said their travel bucket list budget for 2021 has increased because of the pandemic.

As Kiwis continue to wait for international travel to reopen, Expedia data indicates many are still interested in exploring their backyard.

New Zealanders top searched destinations for 2021:

  • Queenstown
  • Auckland
  • Wellington
  • Bay of Plenty
  • Taupo
  • Canterbury
  • Christchurch
  • Rotorua
  • Bay of Islands
  • Nelson

Having been deprived of holidays in 2020, Kiwis are placing more importance in their future trips, with 82 per cent saying they now value holidays more than ever before.

This mind-reset in the meaning of a holiday, has encouraged Kiwis to embrace their trips as more than just ‘time off work’, but as an opportunity to maximise their time with experiences and spending quality time with family and friends.

Additionally, 80 per cent respondents recognise that travel can help create important memories and is one of the best things to come out of the pandemic.

Important Considerations for Valuable Holiday Time

  • Spending quality time with my family: 62 per cent
  • Not having to check work/personal emails or messages: 46 per cent
  • Sightseeing activities and visiting tourist attractions: 42 per cent
  • Travel and holidays mean more to me than just a day I am not working: 49 per cent
  • Activities that are engaging and enjoyable for all my family members: 49 per cent

Expedia’s step by step guide to maximising your holidays in 2021:

Book on a Sunday and fly on a Thursday: Based on past data, the ideal day to book your domestic flight is on a Sunday where the lowest ticket prices tend to occur. Whereas flying on a Thursday can save travellers almost 20 per cent compared to departing on a Sunday.

Shoulder season and avoid school holidays: Peak seasons tend to equal higher prices. Avoid these time periods and opt for shoulder seasons where you can find significant savings.

Flexibility is foolproof: Flexibility is increasingly becoming a pre-requisite for Kiwis, with 34 per cent saying they will only book travel that is fully refundable. For additional peace of mind, consider opting for flexible and refundable options in case any changes need to be made.

Bundle and save: Unlock savings by booking your flight and hotel together, with everything in one place, it takes the stress out of planning.

Play Public Holidays: By using just 16 days of annual leave, Kiwis can turn it into 48 days off, if planned strategically in 2021. Easter is the big one in 2021, take four days of annual leave for a 10-day break.

“After a tumultuous year, it’s humbling and encouraging to see Kiwis’ passion for travel hasn’t wavered," Justine Yusi, Expedia ANZ communications manager says.

"Instead, it continues to grow, with many adding new destinations to their bucket lists and cherishing those special moments even more.

“As we work towards the resumption of international travel, Expedia is committed to helping customers prepare for travel in the ‘new normal’, by providing the right information and support to restore confidence in travel. Whether it’s inspiring memorable experiences within our backyard, or uncovering hidden gems, when ready and able to travel again, sharing helpful travel tips or spotlighting flexible deals, Expedia will be here to help our travellers discover new destinations – smartly and confidently.”

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