Wealthy S'porean travellers don't 'switch off', even when on holiday

Wealthy S'porean travellers don't 'switch off', even when on holiday

SINGAPORE - Wealthy Singapore travellers stay connected even when on holiday and do not "switch off".

According to Visa's latest Global Travel Intentions Survey (GTI), Singapore's affluent travellers with a monthly household income of at least $11,000, like to maintain a connection to their mobile devices as they travel further and outspend their regional counterparts.

They also want access to Internet banking while on holiday - a requirement less important to the general traveler, according to Visa.

According to the survey, they require constant contact with others with 82 per cent accessing their emails and 61 per cent accessing instant messaging platforms during their travels.

At the same time, activities like sharing photos and surfing the web for leisure are less important among Singapore's affluent when they travel - these activities have dropped to 37 per cent and 35 per cent respectively.

Predictably, this group also loves their devices, carrying lifestyle devices such as tablets (53%) and e-book readers (14%) as well as higher-end gadgets such as DSLR cameras (43%) when they travel.

When it comes to selecting a holiday destination, good food (45%) and shopping (37%) are what lures affluent Singaporean travellers to a location.

In contrast, good weather (35%), rich culture (31%) and good attractions (31%) are the three most important reasons for the global affluent traveller.

The survey also found that wealthy Singaporean travellers are twice as likely (16%) to travel alone than other Singaporeans (8%).

They are also more likely to travel further and stay longer than other travellers, with 24 per cent (compared to the Singapore average of 13%) flying more than 9 hours for holidays and 37 per cent staying seven nights or more .

Well-heeled Singaporeans are also venturing further away from home, travelling outside the region more than they used to.

They average seven annual trips in the last two years, compared to the global average of three trips every two years.

Affluent travellers around the world enjoy independent holidays and are more willing to pay extra for someone to help arrange a customized holiday. This is also true of Singaporeans.

"While exclusivity and high quality service remain essential in reaching out to the affluent, the new tide of affluent travellers, who are bolder in their choices, demand a sense of adventure and personalized experiences to meet their individual interests. Singapore's affluent travellers want to discover new places, cultures, and experiences unknown to others," said Ms Ooi Huey Tyng, Visa Country Manager for Singapore and Brunei.

Like most groups, affluent Singaporeans spend heavily on retail (28%), dining (26%) and activities (19%).

Singapore's affluent spend significantly higher than the global average at medium and large retailers, high-end restaurants and on entertainment and nightlife. Some 43 per cent use credit cards to make these purchases - well above the global average of 28 percent .

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