With the Covid-19 pandemic taking a hit on finances, travellers across the world have slashed their discretionary spends, including those on leisure activities. However, while over 75% Indians have not taken a vacation in the last three months and over 44% believe that their holiday and travel budgets have been impacted, over 57% are planning their next leisure travel in early 2021, reveals a survey conducted by ZestMoney, India’s leading AI-driven EMI financing and ‘Buy Now Pay Later’ platform.
Interestingly, an increasing number of people want to opt for domestic travel. Within India, Goa (53.1%), followed by Kerala (32.9%) and Shimla (31.4%), ranked high on the travel bucket-list. Ladakh, Kashmir, Jaipur, Agra and Mysore were the other popular destinations.
As per the survey, over 45% respondents said they would prefer local travel destinations and staycations over international travel in 2021, while ~ 60% respondents preferred interstate travel compared to travelling within the state or internationally.
Also, ~42% respondents said that they would prefer travelling by their personal car over flights or trains, while ~60% said that they would opt for a hotel over a homestay while picking an accommodation for their next trip. Safety & hygiene also ranked as a top criterion (~74%) while selecting a travel destination.
The customer survey was conducted by ZestMoney to understand how Indians are shaping up their travel plans for the coming year. The survey was conducted with a sample of 4600 respondents across key metros and Tier II/III cities in India.
Interestingly, Pay Later solutions are becoming popular as a financing option, with 55% respondents saying they would opt for EMIs or Buy Now, Pay Later option to fund their next personal trip.
Commenting on the trend, Lizzie Chapman, CEO & Co-founder at ZestMoney, said, “The pandemic had halted leisure travel for many travel enthusiasts over the past year as they restrained their discretionary spends and focussed on savings. With the phased reopening across cities, consumers are gradually planning their vacations for the coming year. It’s heartening to see that Buy Now, Pay Later is emerging as one of the preferred options to fund travel plans. The solution not only offers greater flexibility and convenience in managing expenses but is financially efficient too.”
“At ZestMoney, we have seen a gradual uptick for the category with staycations, tour packages and domestic air travel driving the demand. We are witnessing a 50% month-on-month growth in customers opting for the Pay Later solution for the travel vertical on the platform,” added Chapman.