Indian travellers were busy indulging in ‘workcation’ — working away from home in a scenic location — this year as they tried to adapt and make up for lost vacations while working remotely after the coronavirus pandemic upended travel and tourism sector in 2020, according to OYO Travelopedia 2021.
Around 65 per cent of respondents in India have travelled in the past six months and a majority of them visited their loved ones, while some went for a getaway from their daily routines and travelled for leisure. “Nearly 48 per cent of Indians worked from home during the year, out of which a whopping 85 per cent preferred taking workcations or working away from home in a scenic location. And out of these, 61 per cent took a workcation,” according to OYO’s fourth year-end annual index – OYO Travelopedia 2021.
Interestingly, nearly 27 per cent took a month-long workcation. Hill stations ranked top on the list of spots for these work and travel trips, followed by many who visited their hometowns and beach destinations. The annual consumer survey by the hospitality platform to study travel intent and expectations among its user base across some of its core markets, including India, Indonesia and Europe, took responses of nearly 3,000 people this month.
The OYO Travelopedia 2021 found that with mass vaccination drives, travel intent and confidence among Indians is back with 60 per cent of respondents have planned vacations for the winter holiday season. However, most seem to plan their trip closer to the date. “Nearly 31 per cent said they plan their trips a month in advance, whereas 26 per cent prefer planning their travel only a week in advance. This is a stark contrast from pre-COVID days,” it said.
When it came to the type of destination, 35 per cent of respondents preferred a trip to mountainous regions, whereas 24 per cent opted for beach destinations and a good 53 per cent said they were very likely to explore “offbeat domestic destinations”. “Road trips still continue to be a big hit among Indians. Over half the respondents said they would travel by private or rental cars, 35 per cent said they were just as fine to hop on a bus or a train, and a mere 14 per cent were happy to take a flight,” as per the survey.
Hotels were the top choice of accommodation among users, with approximately 60 per cent opting for it, followed by a preference for resorts and waterfront properties by a lakeside, river or beach, it added. As far as ringing in the New Year 2022 is concerned, ‘family and friends’ are core to the plans for the celebration with 44 per cent said they would enjoy the new year with family and friends, while another 44 per cent said they would love to travel with family and friends, as per the survey.
However, around 9 per cent of Indians also opted to go solo and travel – a soul searching this New Year, it added. In terms of New Year resolutions, 30 per cent said they would travel more in 2022, followed by 18 per cent who would love to try to visit their family and friends who they haven’t been able to meet due to travel restrictions. “Another 18 per cent would love to try and explore a new destination every few months. 15 per cent also said they would like to invest in travel by opening a savings account solely for travelling purposes,” as per the OYO Travelopedia 2021.