While domestic travel still tops the charts, Thailand and Singapore are ranked most popular international destinations
Singapore based travelers are keen to explore newly opened borders, with neighboring Malaysia ranking top destination this Eid, while domestic travel remains number one for Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines and India.
Meanwhile, booking data from digital travel platform Agoda reveals Thailand and Singapore as the most popular regional destinations for festive travelers, with Thailand leading the pack in making the top five destination list for all countries. This is followed by Singapore, which placed in top five for Malaysia, Indonesia and Philippines. Indonesia and Malaysia are on par, emerging as Eid favorites for two countries respectively.
On the international front, Malaysians, Indonesians and Filipinos are flocking to cooler weathers with the United Kingdom and United States appearing as choice destination. India, on the other hand, seeks out warmer climate, with Maldives taking top spot followed by the United Arab Emirates.
A further comparison between booking data over the festive period in 2019 and 2022 showed a shift in top ten destination choices for each country. Japan was among the top destination choices in 2019, ranking second most desired destination for Philippines and third for Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia travelers. However, this year, Japan slipped out of the top 10 list as the country still remains closed to tourists. Other 2019 favorites such as China and Hong Kong also did not make the top 10 list this year with existing border closure. This indicates that countries that have been quick to ease restrictions and open its doors stands to gain from international tourist arrivals during this period.
Meanwhile, the top destinations this year also indicate that travelers are opting to travel further, with unassuming countries like France, Turkey, Germany and United Arab Emirates emerging as top destination choices. Switzerland, famously known for rich milky chocolate and mesmerizing alpine scenery has etched itself into the top 10 destination list for all markets.
With most countries now transitioning to endemicity, the complete easing of restrictions comes as a breath of fresh air and delight for many especially as they gear up to celebrate Eid, a festivity largely spent with family, which marks the culmination of Ramadan, the holy month of fasting in the Muslim calendar. For many regions, the Eid celebration this year marks the first time since the onset of the pandemic that Muslims are able to travel freely, reunite and celebrate following the easing of travel restrictions.
Moreover, the month of May is popular among eager travelers across Southeast Asia (Singapore, Malaysia, Philippines, India and Indonesia) as the first two weeks of the month include three public holidays namely Labour Day (1 May), Eid (3-4 May) and Vesak Day (16 May), signaling a golden opportunity for travel.
Most popular destination comparisons by country over 2019 & 2022 Eid celebration period:
- Thailand remains the top regional destination for Malaysians over the festive period, while Singapore overtakes Japan to claim second spot.
- Malaysians opting for international destinations are looking to venture further this year with United Kingdom (#4), Turkey (#6), Australia (#7), Switzerland (#9) and France (#10) making an entry to the top ten list.
Top 10 Destinations for Singaporeans
- Malaysia maintains its position as the top regional destination for Singaporeans while Thailand shifts from third spot to place second.
- Switzerland and United States makes a welcomed entry to the list as 2019 favorites such as Japan, China and Taiwan remain closed to international tourists.
- Philippines jumps from the bottom of the top ten leaderboard to fifth this year.
Top 10 Destinations for Indonesians
- Malaysia, which was the number two choice back in 2019 falls two spots down to fourth place in 2022 while Singapore rose to claim second spot this year.
- This year also sees interesting new additions to the top ten list with United States (#3), France (#5), Switzerland (#6), Turkey (#7), Netherlands (#9), Italy and United Kingdom (#10) making an entry.
Top 10 Destinations for Philippines
- Filipino travelers’ top countries in 2019 – Japan (#2), Hong Kong (#3) and Taiwan (#4) were replaced by Singapore (#2), United States (#3) and Thailand (#4) in 2022 due to border restrictions.
- Filipinos also have their sights set on European countries this year compared 2019 where Asian countries dominated the list. This includes countries like France, Spain, Germany, Italy, United Kingdom and Switzerland.
- Singapore moved from the sixth spot in 2019 to second in 2022, while the United States jumps to third choice in 2022 from placing ninth in 2019.
Top 10 Destinations for India
- Maldives makes an entry to become the choice international destination for Indians this year. This is followed by Thailand (#3) and United Arab Emirates (#4).
- Despite border reopening, Malaysia dropped out of the list this year despite placing third in 2019.