A number of factors are influencing Finns’ decisions on whether to travel abroad for a holiday or take a “staycation” in their home country. The number of domestic leisure trips recorded an improved performance in 2019, with some Finns becoming increasingly concerned about climate change and their own part in increasing levels of pollution and environmental issues, encouraging them to take domestic trips by land, rail and water while a strong decline was registered by air for this same purpose.
Current value sales through online travel intermediaries already dominated overall travel intermediaries in Finland in 2019, while the share of digital bookings across the board ranging from package holidays to travel modes, to lodgings continued to gain in popularity and momentum. Finnish consumers are increasingly adopting a digital stance when researching and booking travel-related products, with mobile sales in particular recording strong growth.
Although hotels recorded a stable but undynamic performance due to the low growth recorded by the largest segment of mid-market hotels in both increasing numbers and current value terms, polar opposites luxury and upscale hotels and budget hotels in particular, recorded the strongest performances in 2019 due to the amount of new players and brands entering these segments at the end of the review period. However, one mid-market brand, the expanded Break Sokos Hotel from S Group in Vantaa, managed to record substantial share gain and value growth by opening an adults-only floor, while leading budget hotel Omena Hotels now offers single rooms in a self-catering capacity to better cater to the solo traveller.
The concept of multimodal bookings for transport continued to be supported by the ongoing popularity of the Whim application by Finnish company MaaS Global or “Mobility as a Service”. The aim is to offer customers the chance to have unlimited use of every kind to transport from different providers in one area, brought together under the mobile app through either a monthly subscription, or alternatively, users can add journeys on demand such as a taxi within 5km.
Growth in domestic leisure trips to be taken over the forecast period is set to marginally improve compared to the review period but in line with the trend for choosing alternative modes of transport to flying, Finns are more likely to travel by land, water or rail when holidaying at home, supported by competitive prices of public transport and growing concerns over environmental issues. Likewise, outbound departures will experience an upwards trajectory as many Finns will continue to escape to warmer climates for their summer breaks, although this experience is being transformed by the increasing number of consumers who will take shorter breaks but upgrade to business class travel or stay in more luxurious hotels as an indulgence, or venture further afield and choose dynamic packaging booked through intermediaries that are able to offer them a more individualised approach.
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