17 Nov

2023 will be the year of the Conscientious Customer

ABTA’s new report Travel in 2023 reveals the biggest travel trends for the year ahead

ABTA has revealed its travel predictions for 2023, including the emergence of a more Conscientious Customer next year. 

According to ABTA’s Travel in 2023 report, holidaymakers will adopt an even more thorough approach to holiday planning than in previous years, which includes putting their trust in an expert to do the job for them. New research from ABTA shows people are 36% more likely to book with a travel professional now than before the pandemic, with getting the security of a package holiday (45%), up-to-date advice (38%) and good value for money (31%) among the top reasons for doing so1.

In addition, these Conscientious Customers will be carefully considering which companies to book with, as an increasing number of people (75%) say booking with a well-known name in the travel industry will be an important part of the booking process this year (up from 62% in 2019), as will previous experience of booking with a specific company (up to 67% from 57% in 2019). The company being a Member of ABTA continues to be an important factor (up to 83% from 79% in 2019)2.

These changes in consumer sentiment mean it’s even more important for ABTA Members to clearly display the ABTA logo in their retail stores, their marketing materials and on social media.

The Conscientious Customer is one of six main trends detailed in ABTA’s Travel in 2023 report. The findings were revealed at the association’s Travel Trends Conference today, as part of a full day of insights on the latest industry trends, popular destinations, customer sentiment and practical tips and advice to inform marketing strategies for the coming 12 months.

Graeme Buck, Director of Communications at ABTA – The Travel Association said:

“Our new Travel in 2023 report paints an optimistic picture for the travel industry next year, with our research and booking trends from our Members clearly showing a strong commitment to foreign holiday taking over the next 12 months. 

“It’s really encouraging to see that many of these committed travellers are placing higher value on booking with trusted travel professionals than before the pandemic. With more than 8 in 10 people saying it’s important that they book with an ABTA Member travel company this year, it’s really important that our Members make sure they’re proudly promoting their ABTA credentials among their customers.”

ABTA’s six travel trends for 2023 are:

  1. All hail the all-inclusive – all-inclusive holidays will be the go-to option to help people control their travel spend and take that sacrosanct holiday next year.
  2. Hibernation holidays – extended winter breaks are proving popular for the months ahead, as people look to swap the cold, damp days of the UK for warmer, sunnier locations.
  3. Getaways to get away – people will turn to their holidays for some much-needed escapism from everyday life in 2023, with familiar destinations proving particularly popular.
  4. Early birds in action – people will book even earlier than normal to lock in a good price for their holiday next year. 
  5. Conscientious customers – an even more conscientious approach to holiday planning than before the pandemic will lead to a rise in bookings with trusted travel professionals.
  6. A new dawn for rail and sail – a recent rail revival in Europe and a rise in no-fly cruises will allow people to enjoy the journey as much as their destination in 2023.

Full details of the trends can be found in the Travel in 2023 report at www.abta.com/travelin2023.

Notes to editors
1) ABTA consumer sentiment research conducted by The Nursery Research and Planning (www.the-nursery.net/) in October 2022, with a nationally representative sample of 500 consumers.
2) ABTA consumer sentiment research from October 2022 (as above) compared with ABTA’s Holiday Habits research for 2019, conducted in July 2019 by The Nursery Research and Planning (www.the-nursery.net/) with a nationally representative sample of 2,043 consumers.

About ABTA
ABTA is a trade association for UK travel agents, tour operators and the wider travel industry. We’re the largest travel trade body, with over 3,900 travel brands in Membership who have a combined pre-pandemic annual UK turnover of £40 billion. We work closely with our Members to help raise and maintain standards and build a more sustainable travel industry, and provide travellers with advice, guidance and support.

Our Members sign up to a code of conduct and commit to agreed service standards and fair trading. When you need clear travel information, and accurate and impartial advice relating to your trip, we’re here for you. We’ll help you understand your level of financial protection, and what to do next, in the unlikely event that an ABTA Member goes out of business. So, whatever happens, when you book with an ABTA Member, reliable advice comes as standard. This means that booking with our Members brings peace of mind. Together with our Members, we help you travel with confidence. www.abta.com