Majority of Singapore travellers prefer to be 'offline' when overseas

Majority of Singapore travellers prefer to be 'offline' when overseas

SINGAPORE - Singapore may have one of the world's highest number of smartphone users, but when it comes to travelling, only four per cent of holiday-makers are interested in having Wi-Fi onboard the plane - that is to say, the rest prefer to remain disconnected on the plane.

This is according to results of a survey by travel search website Expedia, which was commissioned to learn more about the anatomy of the Singapore digital traveller. The Future of Travel report, which surveyed a total of 301 Singaporeans over the period of Aug 20 to Sep 12, 2013, shows some interesting results that are contrary to expected trends.

The survey revealed that when on a leisure trip, around 20 per cent of Singapore holiday-makers do not use their mobile devices in any part of the travel planning process, whether it is for pre-travel planning, or sharing of trip experience during or after holiday.

Though equipped with various smart gadgets, respondents are twice as likely to make their holiday reservations through a personal computer (63 per cent) than with their smart phones or tablets (35 per cent).

Described as a 'nation of complainers', the Expedia survey revealed that over 60 per cent of travellers from Singapore have not posted a negative review in the past year.

The survey also said that Singapore travellers are not only connected but also well-informed. The results showed that 86 per cent of respondents' decisions are influenced by travel reviews. For leisure, travellers from Singapore take off for a trip on an average of three times per year, just slightly lower than the global average of 3.8, reported Expedia.

Meanwhile, for those travelling for work, there is a trend to extend a business trip into a leisure holiday, with more than half of the respondents having done so within the past year.

The survey also revealed that employees on business trips may end up clocking in more hours working than on a regular day at the office. According to the results, over 70 per cent of respondents said that they worked the same or more hours during their work trips.

Female business travellers are more likely to work while travelling to their destinations than their male counterparts, the survey said.

wjeanne@sph.com.sg

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