How Peaks in Travel Content in Ramadan and COVID Point to Future Behaviour

14th June 2020

In the travel sector, there have been very obvious periods when it is clear that macro-economic effects have drawn an increase in online activity. What have been the key periods where spikes have occurred in activity and what can we learn from these for the future?

In tourism, it would be easy to focus on overall comments across platforms and tailor insights based on upon the total data. At Digital Ape, we first focus on the key influencers (we call them ‘creators’) and track their audience through ambient feedback methods, via advanced data science models from our internal team. Through this, we see data that is truly based upon real movers and shakers.

For example, we have tracked interest in travel in millions of posts across Twitter from creators.

Health Mentions

Below, we have been able to follow health mentions in relation to the travel industry. We saw a huge upsurge when COVID related news first flooded our social media streams in March, even before the full lockdown in the G.C.C.

Graph of Health mentions in travel

Flight and Hotel Mentions

Similarly, we follow flight and hotel conversations below in the GCC. During the lockdown, there was a slight uptake in flight mentions, but the real surge in data was during Ramadan 2020. Given, users have more time on their hands during Ramadan, across sectors. That said, as discussed, this initial data shows a pent-up demand in travel.

 

Flight Hotel Mentions Time

Key Destinations

Beneath, we clearly see a rise in activity during Ramadan 2020. This positivity, for Great Britain (in this case), is associated with ‘coming back’ and how travel will be sweeter. This was magnified during Ramadan as families and friends came together (mostly digitally this year) to discuss prior travels and future plans. That said, up to mid March, France was slightly top of mind. 

Graph France UK Top Across Time

Since the pandemic started, the provision of clean public spaces, and all points of contact, have been demanded by the population and government decrees alike. Moving forward, recommendations have already been made across the industry that a focus on cleanliness, for example, would be a way to welcome back travellers in higher volumes.

Additionally, there is also a quiet demand for airline travel, but, obviously, sanitation and cleanliness should be kept in mind, whilst still allowing companies to remain in business.

Previous favourite destinations, such as France, and Great Britain, will also likely continue to see former visitors return. That said, all stakeholders must have up to date insights to stay abreast of any possible resurgence in COVID cases or other factors affecting public perception of the destination in the mind of the GCC resident.

About the data

DA has built a custom data warehouse service called Sila, powered by data science we turn that raw social data into actionable insights.

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