The report said that 56% of consumers would prefer to travel in private vehicles to nearby locations, with family or friends, preferably for one to three days.
Hospitality chain OYO’s ‘India’s Next Destinations’ report has predicted that Jaipur, Goa, and Kochi will be among the country’s most popular leisure destinations in the new normal i.e. post COVID-19. Since air travel has taken a backseat during the pandemic, the opening up of state borders has led to an increase in demand for domestic leisure destinations, as a getaway from city life.
According to OYO’s forecast, Jaipur, followed by Goa and Kochi, are set to become India’s top leisure destinations in October, November and December 2020. With the long weekend during October 2 (Gandhi Jayanti) just around the corner, the report found that travellers are opting for staycations across India’s beach destinations — with Goa topping the list, followed by the seaside resort town of Digha in West Bengal. Travellers will also opt for places such as Jaipur, Pondicherry, Agra, Tirupati, among others.
The report predicted a rise in pilgrimages at the end of the year. During these difficult times, Indians will turn to faith by flocking to the holy cities in India, including Varanasi, Shirdi and Haridwar, it said.
Data also reveals that most of the popular leisure destinations that are bound to be popular in the latter half of the year will be within driving distance from major cities. Jaipur and Udaipur for Delhiites, Goa and Shirdi for Mumbaikars, Mysore for Bangaloreans are some of the places that city dwellers will take a road trip to, according to the report.
“My family and I recently drove to Jaipur for the weekend. We wore our masks, carried our sanitisers, got tested, and hit the roads. It was a truly refreshing and much-needed break from our daily routines. Like us, there are many who are facing fatigue from unending work from home and chores. Many who need a vacation. This is why we’re seeing positive signs of travel coming back. After spending months under lockdown and restrictions easing across the country, consumers are looking forward to stepping out and exploring new destinations, closer to home, and of course with utmost precautions,” said Rohit Kapoor, CEO, India and South Asia of OYO.
The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the lockdowns it induced ensured that leisure travel took a backseat for the better part of the year. However, with lockdowns being eased in a phased manner and various states opening up their borders, there has been a positive upswing of consumers aspiring to travel in the next few months. As per OYO’s consumer use cases, 56% of consumers will be travelling for leisure while 43% would travel for business. When asked about their next travel destination, most respondents opted for Kerala, Goa, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, and Rajasthan. Amongst these, 45% of leisure travellers would prefer hill stations like Shimla and Mussoorie, while the remaining 55% of leisure travellers would prefer non-hill station destinations like Goa, Agra, and Jaipur.
The data further showed that 56% of consumers would prefer to travel in private vehicles to nearby locations, with family or friends, preferably between the duration of one to three days. Approximately 80% of consumers who are planning to travel are searching for sanitised stays, while 46% seek regulation-related information during their decision-making process, according to OYO’s consumer use cases.
According to the report, these are the destinations set to power the country’s tourism industry back on track.