Ascension weekend, what trends for bookings?

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The Ascension weekend gave way to a few days of rest as well as a beautiful heat wave. If the heat was present, bookings were less important than in 2021. According to INSEE, in 2021, New Aquitaine was the first destination for the summer. On the other hand, there is no question of worrying because bookings are still more important than in 2019 according to PAP. Indeed, booking requests are up 17% compared to 2019. And they are down 47% compared to 2021. A year that broke all records following the deconfinement. Thus, for these 4 days of rest, the destination was on the coast. The seaside remained widely solicited by travelers with more less expected destinations. In addition, the other trend concerns the date of reservations, in the middle of a heat wave.

The seaside remains the main destination of the Ascension weekend.

For the Ascension weekend taking to the air by the sea seems to remain one of the most preferred solutions. Indeed, according to the PAP study, the destination represents a little more than three quarters of bookings. However, if the seaside remains in the hearts of travelers, it still loses ground. The destination is losing market share both compared to 2021 and 2019. In particular, it lost 5 points of market share compared to 2019.

So if the sea is a little more neglected by some, the campaign as for it benefits from its postponement. The campaign is thus positioned as the second destination for the Ascension weekend with 13.4 market share. It is gaining more and more the hearts of travelers when we know that its market share was 3.8% in 2019. Finally the other two destinations are the mountain and the city. The mountain remains stable compared to 2019. On the other hand, the city shows a decline in market share. It increases from 8% in 2019 to 1.7% in 2022. So to speak, cities seem clearly abandoned in favor of more peaceful and natural destinations.

Nearly one in two bookings is made at the last minute

Last minute bookings linked to the heat wave

In the process of booking travelers for the Ascension weekend, this year PAP indicates a highlight. Travelers no longer plan their stay in advance. They seem to leave at the last minute, on a whim. Indeed, the PAP platform indicates that 44.1% of booking requests were made at the last minute. Reservations were made from May 9, two and a half weeks before the departure date. This phenomenon is confirmed when we look at the 2019 figures. At the same time in 2019, there were only 30% last-minute bookings.

After the covid-19 health crisis, travelers’ habits have changed, it seems that nothing should now be taken for granted. This year, the heat wave in early May would have had an impact on bookings for the Ascension weekend. For example, at the beginning of this heat wave, bookings for the sea climbed by 81.1%. A trend that was also confirmed for the departments of Pas-de-Calais, which obtained an increase in demand of + 216.4% as well as the Somme which posted an increase of + 176.7%. A progression that illustrates the last-minute bookings of Ile-de-France residents exasperated by the heat.

Sources:

“Focus on bookings made on PAP Vacances for the Ascension Weekend 2022” PAP, press release of 23 May 2022

Nouvelle-Aquitaine, the first tourist destination in France for the summer of 2021” INSEE, study published on: 09/12/2021

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