Whether it’s an all-inclusive stay or a sailing exploring secluded coves, our readers are telling us that romance travel bookings—from destination weddings to “just because”—are hot. In our recent Romance Travel Trends Survey, we surveyed Recommend’s audience to gain insight on romance travel bookings—from the most popular destination for a wedding to the importance of social media when it comes to planning a honeymoon.
Let’s start with the basics: Travel advisors tell us that travel suppliers get a pretty good mark when it comes to what they offer travelers who are looking to book a destination wedding, a honeymoon or a romantic celebration. Ninety percent of those who took the survey give suppliers a B or above in this category.
When it comes to which type of romance travel our readers are most booking, couples’ getaway is way ahead of honeymoons and destination weddings. That tells us that couples want to get away “just because” after being stuck at home for the last couple of years. In fact, honeymoon bookings are outpacing destination wedding bookings among our survey respondents by 12 percent. And most clients celebrating love are heading to the Caribbean, with 55 percent of responders saying that’s the region of choice when it comes to their romance travel bookings. With 66 percent of those surveyed saying that their clients, in fact, are planning to celebrate their honeymoons abroad.
And when they get there, according to 87 percent of those who took the survey, all-inclusive resorts are the most popular type of accommodation. Given that these types of accommodations offer everything under one roof, it’s easy to see why it’s a top choice. That said, couples are also looking for an “intimate boutique resort” getaway.
We also wanted to know how much weight couples put on social media when it comes to choosing their destination wedding or honeymoon locale. Thirty-seven percent say that it’s slightly important to their clients, while only 12 percent say it’s “very important.” Not important at all? Nineteen percent of the respondents say that it has no bearing on their client’s decision-making. What about the cruise line, hotel, or destination’s sustainability practices? More than half of the respondents say it does not play a pivotal role in their client’s travel options.
So how many nights should you be recommending if your clients are looking to book a destination wedding? About four to six nights say more than 65 percent of survey respondents. For honeymoons? It’s seven to 13 nights, according to our audience.
Caribbean is Top Romance Travel Destination
Of course, couples are always looking for some R&R at a beach destination—that continues to remain at the top of vacation choices for couples who want to snuggle up, with a cruise abroad and a visit to an international city coming in close behind. What are the essential must-haves while on a romance vacation? Survey says: Top-notch customer service (1); top-tier amenities (2); and seclusion (3).
And our readers are saying that cruising is roaring back for couples, noting that they choose this mode of vacation because it’s a floating hotel where you unpack once and get to visit multiple destinations. And where are they most headed on this floating hotel? Our readers look to be booking the Caribbean most of all, with European ports of call following closely behind.
Note to you: Travel insurance is as hot if not more so than romance travel, with 85 percent of survey respondents noting that its popularity has increased when compared to pre-pandemic. And you’ll like this news: The average booking window is starting to get back to normal, with most respondents saying that those who are planning a destination wedding are booking out a year in advance. And they’re combining that booking with their honeymoons.
For more on romance travel bookings, join the June 28 webinar—Strategies to Help You Sell More Romance Travel—which is sponsored, in part, by the Saint Lucia Tourism Authority. We’ve got the 411 here: recommend.com/all-webinars/searching-for-bookings-in-all-the-right-places