Indians prefer holiday abroad this festive season: IBM study

Written by Radhika KTP | New Delhi | Updated: Dec 20 2013, 21:53pm hrs
Indian consumers prefer to spend holidays abroad in this festive season, reveals a new social sentiment analysis by IT major IBM. The analysis was done on to consumer interests and enthusiasm for spending holidays.

IBM analysed over 250,000 online conversations to reveal the travel preferences of Indian consumers. According to the IBM social sentiment analysis, travel and hospitality was trending as high as 33% of all social conversation tracked, indicating a particularly high volume of discussions about flying, driving and vacation with family and friends, among others.

International destinations received the most buzz, almost 32% on all social media channels. London is the most mentioned destination city, while Thailand emerged as the most recurring country in social conversations. Goa is the buzziest travel destination in India, followed by Delhi-Agra-Jaipur and Golden-Temple. Taj Mahal followed by Golden-Temple is top most mentioned monuments in social media content. Beaches and palaces are top places to visit on peoples vacation agendas. Kerala tops the charts for being the top trending state in India.

Luxury establishments garnered both very high affinity with positive sentiments and highest proportion of positive sentiments, while as a mode of transportation air travel has highest proportion of negative sentiments.

The IBM desire ratio - the proportion of positive versus negative comments indicates that 59% of people are "looking forward" to taking vacation this December.

Diving deeper into the social dialogue, destinations emerged as the dominant theme being discussed. Positive sentiment associated with luxury destinations also showed a huge surge. Peoples choices for travel and vacation destinations primarily revolved around service and experience, while price was a key driver when it comes to hospitality and travel agents.

Measuring social sentiment has the potential to enable the travel industry to design travel offers and services tailored to what travelers are telling us," said Dr Lata Iyer, Partner, Global Business Services, IBM India & South Asia.

"Big data has the power to offer new insights to the travel industry including airlines, hotels and other travel providers that can translate customer desires into irresistible offers that they will welcome."