Strategy Jul 7, 2020

Post lockdown insights: 5 surprising travel trends on the Belgian & Dutch market

The Corona measures have been gradually lifted and everything seems to be under control at the moment. But what about the travel spirit after this exceptional lockdown period? Do we all need a trip abroad or won't we take that risk yet? We took a closer look at the figures and discovered an answer to some burning questions!

1. Are many booking a trip now?

The start of 2020 did not look promising for tourism. The fear of the Coronavirus - and the subsequent lockdown - was disastrous. However, the sector shows resilience, the figures give hope.

In the Netherlands, a clear recovery was already noticeable in May, with an increase in the number of bookings to 50% compared to January 2020. In June 2020 the number of bookings was increased to 95% compared to January 2020. In Belgium, it took a bit longer, the extra strict measures could explain this. However, things are also moving in the right direction for the Belgians at the moment, as last month (June 2020) we already reached about 70% of the number of bookings compared to January 2020.   

Post lockdown insights: 5 surprising travel trends on the Belgian & Dutch market
Post lockdown insights: 5 surprising travel trends on the Belgian & Dutch market

2. A short trip or a long one?

The current figures show that after the Corona lockdown, both Belgians and Dutch prefer a slightly longer stay at the same hotel, B&B or holiday home.

Whereas in Belgium we booked an average of less than 2 consecutive nights during the first months of the year, we see a slight increase from April onwards. However, these figures have already fallen back a bit in June. In the Netherlands we see the same trend, but less pronounced.

Post lockdown insights: 5 surprising travel trends on the Belgian & Dutch market
Post lockdown insights: 5 surprising travel trends on the Belgian & Dutch market

3. The price tag?

The key question for many hotel or B&B owners: What about our prices in times of crisis? Do we lower them or raise them?

In the statistics we see that the price per reservation rises as the number of bookings decreases. In April, the peak moment of the crisis, the average price per reservation peaks, both for Belgian and Dutch accommodations. In May and June, when the lockdown is over and tourists dare to book trips again, we see a drop in prices towards the "normal" averages of early 2020.

 

Post lockdown insights: 5 surprising travel trends on the Belgian & Dutch market
Post lockdown insights: 5 surprising travel trends on the Belgian & Dutch market

4. This summer or rather a little later?

Are we booking a trip for this summer or are we making reservations for a trip this fall? A remarkable difference between the Belgians and the Dutch!

In April, when the Coronavirus boomed, nights in Belgium were mainly booked for the autumn 2020. In June we see the confidence of the Belgians rising. Many decide to book another trip this summer.

In the Netherlands, trips for the summer months were already booked in April. The Dutch already saw the summer as rosy. In May and June, when tourism gets another boost, this trend continues.

Post lockdown insights: 5 surprising travel trends on the Belgian & Dutch market
Post lockdown insights: 5 surprising travel trends on the Belgian & Dutch market

5. Domestically or abroad?

We also see the difference in confidence and daring when we look at the holiday destination. Belgians choose much more for holidays in their own country, before the first of April an average of 35% of the Belgians opted for holidays in their own country, since the first April this has risen to 61%. In The Netherlands we see a less large increase in the number of tourists from home country. Before the first of April, an average of 42% of the Dutch opted for holidays in their own country, since the first of  April, this has risen to 59%. Foreign tourists are also less inclined to cross the Belgian or Dutch borders. Belgium sees the largest decrease in the number of French tourists, while the Netherlands notices a decrease in British tourists. What is remarkable in the Netherlands, is that the number of Germans has almost doubled, with an increase from 11.70 to 21.46%.

Post lockdown insights: 5 surprising travel trends on the Belgian & Dutch market
Post lockdown insights: 5 surprising travel trends on the Belgian & Dutch market

Wondering how all this keeps evolving? We'll keep our finger on the pulse and provide you with the necessary updates! As a partner we find it important to inform the hospitality world about market insights. We have chosen to fully analyze both countries, we are aware that there are further regional differences and want to analyze them at a later stage (e.g. coast vs. cities). Do you have any further questions, insights or remarks? Be sure to let us know using the form below.

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