By Danny Whitehouse, Editor - Into Forward 

Where will you be travelling to this year?

Where will you be travelling to this year?

In today's world global travel is more turbulent than ever. Over recent years there has been a rise in awareness around global terrorism and an increasing popularity by the media to showcase air-traffic disasters. With many negative stories being told and fair for travellers becoming more prominent than ever there is an opportunity to further understand what is influencing people's decisions to travel. It remains apparent that in today's day and age a huge amount of potential travellers use search engines to find information and make decisions about where to travel to next. With more and more people researching more more topics around travel, understanding trends and what's going to happen next is a job for data analysts. The problem that then happens is that the world is data sources are not getting any smaller. In fact, there are new technology is appearing every day created to be able to do the job of the analysts.

This technology is able to crunch data at a phenomenal speed and evolving to have the capability of processing data in real time. Taking this process one step further, a new breed of machine learning appears which has the ability to do the above mentioned and also refine its own set of processes alleviating the need for human intervention other than to import the data. This process is not restricted to large multinational business it is simply due to the fact that this technology is in its infancy. That's not to say that it is underdeveloped and unpredictable but quite the opposite. Utilising this technique above we have crunched thousands of lines of data to be able to come up with a summary of travel trends and predictions for the next year.

The most notable points from this data analysis have been that there are a huge amount of emerging searches being made by travel consumers around 'reports'. This certainly seems to be a trend that has started around 2014 but has escalated significantly in the last 12 months. Certain companies such as the ABTA and ITS produced travel trends reports but only base their conclusions on previous travel trends but don't look to the future. It seems as though many people are looking to these reports to understand more about potential travel opportunities before booking the flights. This is certainly an area for concern considering the rise of global terrorism over the last couple of years in the Middle East and the West. This could suggest a certain tentative stance by potential travellers searching for this information. Country such as South Africa, China, Germany, Australia and Canada are being searched for more online.

Could this signify to travel agents that these destinations are the new hotspots for travel in the coming year?

Certain words are being used when searching for certain regions, which would imply a general outlook as to how the consumer feels about travelling to a certain destination. Alternatively it could predict or give more information as to what travel patterns are happening within those regions. For example China is searched for and referenced as 'essential'. Does this mean that potential travellers are making a decision as to whether they should travel to China if it is deemed to be essential. It almost feels the same as when there are weather warnings in the region you are in and everyone is asked to remain inside. Can we conclude from this information that potential travellers are more wary of flying and seek information before travelling from reputable sources?

Based on the hotspots above where will you be basing your holiday this year?


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