Sunday, January 23, 2022

2022, The Year of YES! How and Where Kiwis Want To Travel This Year Revealed

Finally, the friendly skies look like they’re opening again! Grab that passport (ok, first find that passport) and head off on an adventure – and for inspiration, check out what your fellow New Zealanders are planning!

After so long of being told “no”, Kiwi travellers are firmly saying ‘yes!’ when it comes to travel – but these days in our ‘new normal’, things are looking a little different when it comes to heading off on an adventure. In fact, eight in 10 Kiwi travellers (79%) will be shirking all of the structure they’ve been contending with, preferring a holiday where they stay flexible and just go with the flow, according to a new study.

The coming year will bring the very best of improvisation to travel, with travellers responding to each unexpected twist and turn with an emphatic “yes, and…” To that end, nearly two-thirds (64%) of New Zealanders will be saying YES to any holiday opportunity if budget allows, unfussed where they go as long as it’s the type of trip they want and, most importantly, away from home.

If you’re wondering what ‘yes’ you have on your horizon, Booking.com has suggested their five travel opportunities Kiwis should say “nah yeah” to in 2022.

Group trips? Hell yeah!

Queenstown, New Zealand

With more than half (58%) of New Zealand travellers looking for travel buddies that “just say yes” and are happy to go with the flow, there are plenty of group trips in the making for friends and families who have been stuck in lockdown for far too long. You might have been with the same group of people for a long time, so now is the time to round up the friends and whānau you haven’t seen!

Where to go: The perfect place for a group trip in Aotearoa is one with something for everyone. Adventure? Great food and wine? Instagrammable scenery? Not just the perfect winter destination, Queenstown is also the ultimate summer group holiday destination, and with everything from hotels, motels, apartments and holiday homes, no matter your group size you’ll be taken care of.

Somewhere new? Absolutely yes

Mt Fuji, Japan

While many of us have forgotten where our passport is or even just how to pack, all that out-of-practice travel awkwardness will give way to a genuine sense of delight for even the most routine aspects of our trips in 2022. And while we’re relishing in the return to the aspects of travel we know and love, we’ve had close to two years of the same places, faces and experiences and a change of scenery is in order.

Where to go: While we don’t have a date for international travel yet, Kiwis are optimistic it’s in the near future and there’s nothing stopping you from planning a trip further down the track. If you want to try something different from the stereotypical OE, Japan might be just for you. From the culture and cuisine, modern meets historic in one of history’s oldest civilisations.

Holiday romance? Aw, yeah

Holiday love in Sydney

With more than a third (39%) of Kiwi travellers hopeful for a holiday romance, love is well and truly in the air for 2022. If you’re single and ready to mingle then a holiday entanglement might just be on the cards for you on your next trip – all you have to do is say yes. It may be a fleeting fling or the real deal, as thanks to technology your holiday romance doesn’t have to stop at the end of the trip.

Where to go: While the iconic city of love may remain out of reach for a while longer (Paris we are COMING trust us!) a trip to the Emerald City, also known as Sydney, Australia, might be closer than we think. You can find a beach babe on Bondi or a dashing darling in Darling Harbour – Sydney’s sparkling night lights offer the perfect backdrop for a tryst on your travels.

A holiday first? It’s about time!

Taupō bungy, New Zealand

Whether you’re going to a place you’ve been many times before or exploring somewhere new, this year is all about saying yes to everything – especially to holiday firsts. If you’re thinking of going on a hike you’ve never been on before, kayaking, bungy jumping or even exploring a place with cuisine you’ve never heard of, it’s time to embrace what you don’t know and give it a go!

Where to go: Perhaps you’ve been to Taupō before, but have you experienced New Zealand’s tallest cliff-top bungy jump? Located 47 metres (154 feet) above the Waikato River, you can enjoy the stunning views before taking the plunge into or towards the crystal clear waters below. Ticking off something new in an old favourite right in our backyard.

A trip with purpose? Count me in!

The pandemic forced us to make the most of what was on our doorsteps and support our local communities. This desire to connect with and support the local community continues on our travels, with half (53%) of Kiwis agreeing it’s important their trip benefits the local community at their destination and 47% keen on an app or website that recommends destinations where an increase in tourism would have a positive impact on the local community.

Where to go: Rarotonga was hard hit by the travel restrictions, with the islands relying heavily on international tourism to support their local economy. With the exciting news of quarantine free travel for Kiwis from 14 January 2022, Rarotonga is the perfect place to spend those well earned dollars – but don’t spend all your time in the resorts, get out to the local markets and support the community.

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