Final Travel Trends Ahead of World Cup Kickoff
The latest travel trends ahead of the 2022 World Cup.
*THIS DATA WAS PULLED October 2022.
We are just over six weeks from the first match of the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar set to start on 21 November. We've been monitoring our travel trends and want to share the latest and greatest as the opening tournament is right around the corner.
United Arab Emirates (UAE) remains the top feeder market with consistent growth month-over-month of 3%, and comprises 17% of all bookings to Qatar over the World Cup period. It is close enough to hop on one of the match day shuttle flights that have been scheduled, to stay in UAE and have a quick commute into Doha. It was recently announced that non-ticket holders for the World Cup will now be able to enter Qatar during the tournament, as long as they have approval from someone with a match ticket. This means that more people will be in Qatar to enjoy the festivities that come with the World Cup, and people located in the immediate region can participate, as well.
Travel Marketing Tip: Is your hotel fully booked during the World Cup period? If so, that’s great, but you should continue to maintain your digital marketing presence. Now is the time to share the details of your amenities, such as restaurants, pools, or spas, so guests are fully aware of your offerings, and know where they can spend their time when they aren’t cheering on their favourite team.
In a previous update, we saw that APAC booking levels to the GCC were behind the likes of Europe. However, we’ve recently seen a late-stage dramatic uptick in bookings from APAC, which are up over 17,000% from the beginning of the year. This could be in part a response to the fact that this World Cup, there are a record six teams from the region taking part, including Australia, Japan, and South Korea. We also see the recent easing of travel restrictions from the likes of Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Japan, and there is a general increase in outbound travel intent from these countries.
Travel Marketing Tip: Looking to reach Asian travellers searching for their next adventure? Tap into travel intent data—that is, reaching people who are actively in-market for their next trip. They could be looking for travel to the Middle East, or searching for competitor destinations but haven’t quite decided. There is no smarter way to spend your marketing budget and encourage would-be travellers to book with your brand.
From when we started tracking flight bookings to Qatar in January, we saw 39% of departures arrive in Qatar during the kickoff week. The vast majority, 80% of those flights booked during kickoff week, were purchased prior to September.
Travel Marketing Tip: Attractions and tour operators should already be getting in front of customers and offering up their services and amenities to travellers ahead of their arrival. Be sure to showcase your offerings to those people looking to see the sights and the sounds of the region beyond football.
With only a few weeks before the start of the tournament, reach out to our team now to activate your World Cup marketing campaign.
Capitalize on increased demand during major events to drive bookings.
Align your digital marketing strategies with eco-conscious efforts.
Cory Jobe shares his always-on marketing experience with Sojern.
“Working with Sojern, it’s not just a cookie-cutter solution, as Sojern listens to our needs and recommends what’s best for our hotel. We have someone to bounce ideas off of, and Sojern gives us a higher-level perspective on how we can get the best value for our investment.”
“We love the simplicity of the solution and how clearly we can see results. The technology works so well that it leaves us to do our other day-to-day jobs. We are seeing increased interest in our superior and deluxe rooms as a result, which is improving the overall average booking value. I think we will be long-time customers for as long as Sojern continues to perform the way it does today!”
"Sojern and Roiback have a great relationship and work together to maximise our direct bookings. We have regular check-ins to review performance, and both Sojern and Roiback give us insights and recommendations for improvement. And the results speak for themselves! Their collaboration has been very helpful for us."
"I’ve definitely seen increased bookings. In fact, January through March is usually a quiet period for us, but this year, leisure bookings are double what we normally see, and this is due to Sojern. As a small hotel, I really value the relationship we've built with the Sojern team. You can tell when someone is genuine and willing to work with you, and I feel that with Sojern."
"I worked with Sojern at a previous hotel and had a great experience, so I knew I wanted to partner with them when I joined Ticino Hotels Group. Their Pay on the Stay package gives us a cleaner, more reliable business model to help with our direct booking strategy, and we’ve seen the results. To anyone considering Sojern for their digital marketing needs—I say go for it!"
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