Planning and decision-making of international visitors

High up balcony view over city

When visitors decide to visit Britain and when they actually book their trip or aspects of their trip is important to the travel and tourism industry.


Understanding when international visitors initially start planning their holiday and considering a destination and what booking method they are most likely to use, can help you decide when and how to market your product. 

In spring 2016, VisitBritain commissioned new research in 20 markets to understand the holiday decision-making process.

  • Almost half (49%) of visitors to Britain started thinking about their trip more than 6 months in advance of taking it. A further 31% started thinking between 3 and 6 months in advance.

  • More than 70% of visitors from our longest haul markets - Australia and New Zealand – started thinking about their trip more than 6 months in advance.

  • When looking at responsibilities over the holiday planning process, ‘researching’ and ‘booking’ are more likely to be done by the individual, whereas shortlisting and finalising a destination are done in consultation with the travel companion.

  • Globally, the biggest influence on destination choice is word of mouth, with talking to friends and family key for 40% of visitors and considerers.

  • Britain’s cultural attractions remain the top reason to visit Britain, with 42% of visitors and 47% of considerers citing this as a key reason for visiting or considering visiting.

Read the full report on Researching and Planning (PDF, 1MB). Published March 2017.

This is interesting reading for us here at Talking Heads - the first impact you will have on your international visitors is a digital one - and this must be in your target market's language. 

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