Flexible Cancellations and Clear Health Information… Most Highly Valued by Tourists

This is the second part of our report outlining the conclusions of a survey we held among international golfing clients in early-September. The survey was conducted by personal email invitation to verified clients, and attracted 1,000 replies from clients in 28 countries (74% of them European). We explained some of the technical aspects in the first part and in the complete survey report. 

In that initial report we analysed data in reference to cancellations, while here in the second part we compare the conclusions that can be drawn when it comes to respondents’ perception of Spain’s diverse destinations, as well as the key measures they take into account when assessing our bookings. 

In the first case, we offered those surveyed the option of choosing between “not sure”, “unsafe”, “safe” and “very safe”, when rating several destinations in the main coastal golfing areas of Spain, plus the rest of Spain, and in Portugal (Algarve and Lisbon). Some of the Spanish destinations were excluded from the results as they only had an extremely limited number of replies.

It is worth mentioning that the survey was carried out at a time when Portugal was still exempt from the UK’s 14-day quarantine rule for returning travellers, a situation that changed towards the end of the survey period.  

The conclusions were to be expected: at an image (or perception) level, they rated Portuguese destinations higher than Spanish ones. In the case of the Algarve, 39.7% of those replying rated the destination as “safe” or “very safe”, compared with the best-placed Spanish destination, the Costa del Sol, with 32.26%. No destination reached 10% of replies rating it as “very safe”, and the best rating for the rest of Spain was “not safe”.  

If we look at only the positive replies, it is easier to compare the different perceptions for each destination, ranging from 10% to 40%…   

Another aspect that especially interested us was how clients assess our varied range of sales incentive options when considering a future booking. This is important when evaluating potential marketing strategies to attract new sales during these uncertain times.   

Analysing both the positive and the least relevant options, it is clear that flexibility in cancellation conditions and accurate and transparent information about the number of cases and a destination’s general health situation are the issues that most influence a client’s decision when making a booking, together with travel insurance. Interestingly, in the context of the current situation, lower prices and obligatory tests when travelling are the least highly rated issues by clients.  

These conclusions become even clearer when comparing a balanced scale of highly valued vs. irrelevant factors. 

We are considering repeating the survey and, in the near future, comparing the results to determine how the situation is evolving as the pandemic progresses. In the meantime, we believe the effort involved in sharing this information in recent weeks will be beneficial for our sector – one that has been so seriously affected by the coronavirus crisis. Other conclusions drawn from our study are of an internal nature, and will only be sent to selected commercial associates and those who request further information. 

If you do share data from this study, we would be extremely grateful if you always include a courtesy reference and link to this blog post.