Virtuoso Reveals Top 2023 Travel Trends for Canadians
Virtuoso has identified when, where and why upscale Canadians will be venturing in 2023. In Virtuoso’s 2022 Brand and Travel Trends Research, conducted in collaboration with YouGov, more than 500 Canadian travellers were surveyed. The majority – 75 percent – listed relaxation and disconnecting as the primary incentive for taking a leisure trip, followed by adventure, which is almost twice as important for Canadians than for global travellers (41 percent versus 25 percent). Additional revelations include an affinity for sunny destinations, expedition cruises and a willingness to spend big and stay longer.
Virtuoso’s study showed 61 percent of travellers preferred beach vacations, followed by city exploration (47 percent). Canadians are equally as likely to travel to Europe as they are to travel within their own country, and they showed a preference for the Caribbean or West Indies (36 percent versus 20 percent globally) and Mexico (30 percent versus 16 percent globally), which is likely due to a desire to escape to warmer climates during the winter months.
Family Travel: Exploration Boosts Child Development
Canadians indicated the most popular ways to travel are with a spouse or significant other and multi-generational family travel. Travelling with school-age children is consistently popular. Interestingly to note while heading into March Break, over half of those surveyed believe travel is important to the development of children under 18.
Spending Big and Staying Longer
Relative to 2019, travellers plan to spend 12 percent more in 2023 and the anticipated annual spend for Virtuoso-advised travellers in 2023 is even higher at $20,000 CAD per person. While Virtuoso clients took about the same number of trips in the past year as other travellers, Virtuoso-advised travellers took longer trips, spent more nights in hotels, rentals and cruises, and skewed more towards international trips.
Travel Advisors vs. DIY: No Contest
Canadians favour using travel advisors more than other travellers globally, and 73 percent of those surveyed typically research a trip two to eight months in advance. They are also twice as likely to care about creating a travel experience that best fits their expectations over price (66 percent Virtuoso-advised travellers versus 33 percent DIY). Non-advised travellers spent $8,400 CAD per person on travel in 2022, while Virtuoso’s Canadian clients spent $19,600 CAD per person – proving they prioritize travel more than others and also highly value their travel advisor. Surveyed travellers cite special benefits and values, complimentary perks and upgrades, VIP treatment and rare access, advisors’ firsthand expertise and a global network of agencies as the top reasons for booking with a Virtuoso travel advisor.
“Virtuoso has more than 2,300 travel advisors in Canada located coast-to-coast, and this number has grown by 13 percent since 2019,” said General Manager, Virtuoso Canada Úna O’Leary. “Travellers look to advisors to save them time, provide expert guidance and offer an extra layer of protection if something goes wrong.”
Top Travel Destinations for 2023
Virtuoso tapped into its data warehouse of more than $63.6 billion (USD) in transactions to determine the top destinations of 2023, as determined by Canada-based travellers:
- Mexico – Cancun, Puerto Vallarta, Los Cabos
- Canada – Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary
- United States – Orlando, Fort Lauderdale, Las Vegas
- Dominican Republic – Punta Cana, Puerto Plata
- United Kingdom – London
- Jamaica – Montego Bay
- Italy – Rome, Venice
- France – Paris, Nice
- Australia – Sydney
- Portugal – Lisbon, Faro