“The White Lotus” effect: More people make travel plans on TV

70 percent of Generation AZ and Millennials are inspired to go on vacation by binge-watching.

If you spent the entirety of “The White Lotus” season 2 thinking about how beautiful Sicily is, apparently you’re not alone. More and more people are using their favorite shows as personal travel agencies, according to the company’s report American Express.

According to the American Express Global Travel Trends Report, 64 percent of travelers said they made travel plans or were inspired to visit a country or destination after being featured in a TV show, news source or movie. The same proportion said they used travel television shows as inspiration for activities at their destination, and 61 percent said shows and movies inspired them to visit certain stores or restaurants. Still, more respondents (75 percent) said they used social media to inspire bookings, with Facebook and Instagram still the most influential vacation planners.

These trends are even more significant and visible among Generation Z and Millennial respondents, whom the survey defines as those born between 1981 and 2012. 70 percent of respondents in this age group said they were inspired after visiting a location. television show or movie. That’s noticeably more than the percentage of respondents who said Instagram (46 percent) and TikTok (29 percent), the two most popular social media apps, inspired them to visit a location among their age group.

American Express didn’t track any specific information about which shows inspired the most travel plans. However, according to a report Bloombergthe most notable examples of which are on-location shows during the pandemic, including HBO’s “White Lotus” and Netflix’s “Emily in Paris.”

Season 1 of “The White Lotus,” filmed at the Four Seasons Resort Maui in Wailea, Hawaii, saw a 425 percent year-over-year increase in Internet traffic to the property. The Four Seasons San Domenico Palace in Sicily, where Season 2 was filmed, also saw a surge in bookings, according to the Four Seasons, and other luxury resorts in Sicily are seeing similar increases, according to luxury travel company Little Emperors. So wherever an HBO show is gearing up for Season 3, you should be prepared for a spike in bookings.

The American Express report was based on data from an online poll conducted by business intelligence firm Morning Consult between February 3 and February 11. They surveyed 2,000 American travelers and 1,000 travelers from Australia, Canada, India, Japan and Mexico. , and the United Kingdom. Respondents had a minimum household income of $70,000 and reported traveling by plane at least once a year. The margin of error of the survey results is plus or minus three percent.

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