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Tripadvisor Shares Positive Travel Trends from 2021

Photo: Shutterstock

Travel in 2021 may have had its starts and stops, but one thing was for sure this year: travelers’ appetites to get out and explore showed no signs of waning. While travel as we know it may have looked different this year, people still got their fix in some way or another. As we close out the year, Tripadvisor, the world’s largest travel guidance platform, looks back over the last 12 months at some of the ways we reengaged the world as travelers connected, supported, and guided each other to discover all the good out there in 2021. 

The pandemic has continued to make a profound impact on travel and tourism. However, despite lockdowns and travel restrictions far and wide, travelers remained hopeful and positive that travel will recover. 

In fact, more than 44 million new travelers joined the Tripadvisor community in 2021, and 2.5 million travelers posted a review for the first time in a year. 

Reviews aside, here are some other inspiring insights from 2021 worth celebrating: 

  • Travelers were big on trips this year 
    • More than 7 million new trips (travel itineraries) were created on Tripadvisor—If you took a trip a day, it would take you more than 13,830 years to do them all. 
    • The planning was endless, both the little escapes and the big occasions. Just ask the travelers who named their trips “Mom needs a getaway so no Momster comes out” and “Where is Alexis going to propose?
  • Travelers took the time to appreciate each other and the interactions they did manage to have, whether virtually or in person 
    • “Thank you” was mentioned over 41 million times in reviews and forums this year.
  • Despite the impact of COVID-19 and its effect on travel, travelers managed to find bright spots everywhere 
    • Tripadvisor’s “Highlight of the day!!!!” forum has 5,000+ posts that saw traveler updates both big and small. 
  • As travel recovers, new businesses have been popping up everywhere this year to welcome guests back through their doors 
    • 309,270 new accommodations, 109,110 new experiences, and 175,286 new restaurants listed their businesses on Tripadvisor in 2021
  • Travelers were longing for sunshine this year. These were some of the favorite sunny destinations travelers were searching for this year 
    • Honolulu saw 3.2 times more Experiences bookings than pre-pandemic
    • Cancún, Mexico, saw a 17 percent increase in searches compared to 2020
    • Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, saw a 96 percent increase in searches compared to 2020
    • Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt – more than doubled (106 percent) its searches compared to 2020
  • In addition to sunny destinations, travelers were obsessed with outdoor experiences. Based on bookings done this year, these are some of the most popular destinations for outdoor experiences in 2021 
  • Looking ahead to 2022, travelers are more than ready to get out of their work-from-home setups and back to exploring the world. 
    • There are more than 66,000 Trips with “2022” in the title already saved

“2021 was full of ups and downs in travel, but despite that, it was heartening to see how travelers showed up for each other, continuing to support, appreciate and share how they traveled where they could,” says Steve Kaufer, president and CEO at Tripadvisor. “While a lot remains unknown in the year ahead, we remain hopeful and positive that travel will continue to recover, and travelers will be able to get back out to finding the good out there.”

About The Author
julieKeller_author-1

Julie is the co-founder of Well Defined and a longtime influencer and advocate in the wellness world. Along with her work at Well Defined, she is an executive recruiter and marketing specialist for Hutchinson Consulting. She is also a consultant and content strategist for numerous wellness brands. She is the former editor-in-chief and publisher of American Spa and was named a 2019 Folio Top Woman in Media in the Industry Trailblazers category and a 2018 winner of ISPA’s Innovate Award. She is also a seasoned journalist, specializing in spa, travel, health, fitness, wellness, sustainability, and beauty. She has been published in Departures, ForbesTraveler.com, E! Online, Gayot.com, Insider’s Guide to Spas, Luxury Travel Advisor, Marin Magazine, Ocean Home, Smart Meetings, Spa Asia, and Travel Agent.