4 Summer Travel Trends To Expect, According To Kayak

North Island, a Luxury Collection Resort, Seychelles,

Travel searches are up as much as 70 percent month over month. This is according to KAYAK, a travel company that recently released a ‘Return to Travel’ Hacker Guide focused on where to go as restrictions ease. The guide aims to help travelers navigate where to go, what’s open and how to craft that perfect out-of-office message for some much-needed time away. Here are 4 summer travel trends to expect, according to the research by Kayak.

1. The Caribbean is calling all Vaxicationers.

The Resorts & Residences by CuisinArt
Rendezvous Bay, Anguilla, CuisinArt Golf Resort & Spa

Looking at the last 7 days, the Caribbean is showing great signs of recovery with travel search interest down only 16 percent compared to the same in 2019, likely due to eased restrictions for vaccinated U.S. travelers announced earlier than most places. In fact, out of the top 10 most searched for destinations open to U.S. tourists, five are within the Caribbean including Cancun, Punta Cana, Montego Bay, Aruba and The Bahamas.

2. Solo travelers are headed South.

Ecuador Latitude Line

Despite the pandemic, interest in solo travel is still top of mind for many with 68 percent of searches for solo travel in the first three months of 2021, particularly to South America.

This is likely due to eased restrictions and wallet friendly airfare prices, which are down 14 percent over the last 7 days (4.27 – 5.3) compared to the same time period in 2019 – the cheapest of any region. Cartagena, Lima and Medellin in particular are attracting the largest number of solo travelers with at least 80% of flight searches for one person to all three cities.

3. Group travel is booming.

Sojrn Italy trip

Whether it’s your group of best friends or a family of 3+, groups are reuniting in places with sun, sand and warm weather – not to mention plenty of outdoor activities. Las Vegas, Orlando and Honolulu are among the most searched for destinations for parties of three or more.

4. Americans are eager to travel overseas.

Aland Tent Finland
Aland tent. Photo: Rebecka_Eriksson

Recent news that vaccinated American tourists will likely be able to visit the EU this summer caused travel searches on KAYAK to spike indicating Americans are eager for borders to reopen and travel overseas.

Even prior to the news, some European destinations were starting to pop, European destinations that saw the biggest spike in searches month over month for travel anytime include Dubrovnik (searches up 205 percent), Zurich (searches up 167 percent), Prague (searches up 144 percent) and Reykjavik (searches up 143 percent).

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KAYAK created a “Matchmaker Quiz” that pairs you with a destination on this year’s Travel Hacker Guide based on factors like how many vacation days you have and which trip you were most bummed to cancel in 2020. Travelers will be matched with destinations from one of three lists: the top 10 destinations accepting vaccinated travelers (hello vaxication!), top 10 recommendations if you’re flying solo (we know there are some of you out there) and top 10 picks to finally take that group trip that has been delayed for over a year.

For the hackers guide, KAYAK considered searches conducted on the US KAYAK site between 01/01/2021 and 03/30/2021 for travel from the US occurring for summer travel dates specified as 05/01/2021 – 09/30/2021.

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Jimmy Im has traveled to 113 countries, stayed in over 600 hotels and has flown a million airmiles. He lives in New York City.

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