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Europe’s international travel recovery closes in on FY19 figures, while elsewhere a resurgence in COVID-19 cases stifle demand

Consumers continue to return to travel across Europe as the region leads the trend of positive booking growth. Italy (+22% vs last week), Germany (+13% vs last week) and the UK (+18% vs last week) are among the top residencies with double-digits week on week growth. Business wide, CarTrawler has observed a positive upward trend in new bookings with gross bookings last week up +11% versus the previous week. ​

In terms of domestic and international travel, Europe remains the only continent whose international travel bookings are closing in on YoY figures. In FY19 Europe’s breakdown was 77% international travel, while FY20 figures show that this is not far behind at 71% (for last week). This split is unique as international travel recovery in other regions varies significantly. ​

While Europe’s recovery in international travel is unique and they continue to close in on FY19 figures, other regions are seeing demand hampered by a rise in cases. Owing to a resurgence in COVID-19 cases, there has been a notable slowdown in booking volumes in markets such as North America and Australia. Weakened demand has been seen in the U.S as cases reach record highs this week and similar impacts can be seen in Australia, as cities like Melbourne move back into a 6-week lockdown period. Despite the continued uncertainty and disruption in the U.S market, bookings in the U.S returned to WOW growth +11%. ​

Over the past number of months, CarTrawler has been closely monitoring flight search data shared by Google to assess consumer behaviour and intent to travel. These trends appear to align almost identically with CarTrawler’s own car reservation statistics which further highlights the strength of CarTrawler’s car reservation trends and statistics.  Trends from both search data and CarTrawler reservations show that consumers are booking international travel 2 months in advance vs 1 month in advance for domestic travel. Trip durations for domestic are less than a week on average, vs 11 days for international travel. ​

Author: Jennifer Wilson