Booking.com Sustainable Travel Report 2024: Indian Travellers Express Desire for Sustainable Travel Amidst Weariness

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Booking.com Sustainable Travel Report 2024: Indian Travellers Express Desire for Sustainable Travel Amidst Weariness
Booking.com Sustainable Travel Report 2024: Indian Travellers Express Desire for Sustainable Travel Amidst Weariness
Booking.com releases its ninth Sustainable Travel Report 2024, with insights gathered from more than 31,000 travellers across 34 countries and territories, exploring the latest consumer attitudes, priorities and influences related to sustainable travel. While the annual research reveals a continued sense of desire and awareness, with 95% of Indian travellers confirming that sustainable travel is important to them, new insights show a sense of weariness may be spreading throughout the world as a result of the ongoing challenges that travellers experience to make more sustainable travel decisions.
A recent study shows that nearly one-fourth (24%) of Indians feel travelling more sustainably is important, but not a primary consideration when planning or booking a trip. Also, 46% of travellers expressed fatigue from constant discussions around climate change. With this in mind, the opportunity for collective action is more pertinent than ever, in order to ensure that progress toward a more sustainable travel industry remains a priority.
Positive Intentions Meeting New Challenges
Indian travellers continue to feel that travelling sustainably is important and their intentions to do so are clear. 93% of Indians say that they want to travel more sustainably over the next 12 months. Almost two-thirds (62%) of Indian travellers stated they would feel guilty when they make less sustainable travel choices and 20% of them want to travel more sustainably because they believe it’s the right thing to do.
However, a sense of disillusion towards making more sustainable travel choices may be counteracting those intentions. New areas of exploration researched for the first time this year reveal that some travellers don’t recognise the importance of being more mindful of their impact.
  • More than half (52%) feel that the damage already done is irreversible and that the travel choices they make are not going to change that.
  • In fact, 39% don’t believe climate change is as severe as people make it out to be and 47% feel their time spent travelling is too precious to put sustainability at the top of their decision-making list.
  • 53% of travellers believe that being more sustainable in a destination that is not implementing sustainability practices itself feels pointless.
 
Shared Responsibility and Critical Opportunity for Industry-Wide Enablement
While 42% of Indian travellers think they can have a positive influence on the social impacts of travel, an equal number (42%) think the government holds the most potential for countering the economic efforts and 42% believe travel service providers hold the key to counteracting the environmental factors. Therefore the need for collective action to ensure progress toward a more sustainable travel industry remains a priority.
The travel industry can ensure travellers prioritise sustainable travel habits by providing consistency of certification standards and labels.
  • 48% of travellers find it more appealing when they come across an accommodation labelled as more sustainable.
  • Consistency of certification standards is critical with almost three-fourth (73%) of travellers agreeing that all travel booking sites should use the same sustainable certifications or labels.
  • However, the number of travellers who are interested to learn more about why the accommodation was given this label is down 25 percentage points (at 60%) when compared with the same time last year, indicating a need for simple, clear communication that enables easy decision-making regardless of priorities.
 
Santosh Kumar, Country Manager, India, Sri Lanka, Maldives and Indonesia at Booking.com commented “In its 9th year now, Sustainable Travel Report 2024 presents a timely picture on traveller views, perceptions, habits and potential barriers when it comes to more sustainable travel. Each year, we see travellers expressing their intentions and commitments to making more sustainable travel choices, but this year’s new insights show that a sense of weariness could be emerging fueled by the ongoing challenges that they experience to make more sustainable travel choices. With many travellers believing the damage already done is irreversible and the choices they make will not change that, we believe that working together across the industry, simple changes when taken together can start to make a big difference. At Booking.com, our mission is to make it easier for everyone to experience the world, and that includes providing a platform that makes it easier to take the next important steps together on our collective journey to a more sustainable future for travel.”
 
To download Booking.com’s full 2024 Sustainable Travel Report, please visit the Booking.com global media room.