TCS Travel Barometer 2023: Switzerland remains a popular travel destination
The TCS Travel Barometer gives an insight for the sixth time into the travel behaviour of Switzerland’s population. The representative survey of residents and TCS members shows which sources of information are particularly popular, how well people feel informed about travel, what news is perceived on the subject of travel and how the population feels about safety. The study, which was commissioned by TCS Switzerland over many years, makes it possible to interpret the development of opinion on the subject of travel not only currently, but also over time.
In times of the Corona pandemic, holidays in Switzerland were more popular than ever. The pandemic is now history, but travel preferences remain relatively similar to the Corona years. Thus, Switzerland continues to be a popular holiday destination among travellers. The Swiss resident population is currently travelling significantly more frequently than during the Corona pandemic. 80% of travellers state that they have spent at least three nights away from home. Of the overnight stays made, more are again being spent abroad than during the Corona pandemic (+22% since 2021). However, the figures are not (yet) quite as high as they were before 2021. Europe is very popular among travellers. Switzerland’s neighbouring countries in particular were popular destinations among residents who had made at least one trip abroad in 2022. At the top of the list is our neighbouring Italian country.
Climate awareness while travelling
Currently, climate-conscious travel is clearly losing support among travelling residents. On the one hand, support for ecologically conscious travel is declining (mean value 6.4 in 2022 to 5.7 in 2023), and on the other hand, a majority wants to use the car and the plane as the main means of transport in the future.
Perception of safety
Safety in travel planning remains a central factor despite the high sense of security. The focus is no longer on a single, dominant aspect. Rather, the perceived travel risks have become more numerous and complex. Aspects such as the threat of terrorism or crime play an eminent role in travel preparations. What remains unchanged, however, is the sensitisation of the resident travelling population with regard to health issues, as well as the far-reaching importance of local security and care in travel planning. Three safety concerns are rated as important by a majority on the ground: Namely, the guarantee of basic services (58%) and the guarantee of an exit as well as an immediate health treatment in the event of a crisis (both 47%).
Sources of information on travel risks
The first port of call for information on travel risks and obstacles is currently the online media – in the form of travel portals as well as media in the destination country. They are now replacing the Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH) as the top source of information. The Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA) is also losing importance for residents. The opposite is true for the TCS as a source of information: More and more people say they use the TCS to find out about travel risks or obstacles. This means that the TCS is currently consulted by travelling residents about as often as the two federal actors surveyed. Less often, residents seek information from travel insurance companies or travel organisers.
The results of the TCS Travel Barometer 2023 are based on two surveys: On the one hand, a representative sample of 1,010 Swiss residents aged 18 and over was surveyed by telephone. 20 percent of this population survey was carried out on mobile phone numbers in accordance with the dual-frame approach.
On the other hand, members of the TCS were also surveyed. Of the total of 1.5 million TCS members, a random sample of 10,000 was drawn and invited to participate in an online survey. 1’039 TCS members participated.
The sampling error is ± 3.1 percent for the population survey and ± 3.0 percent for the survey of TCS members. The survey was conducted from 14 February to 16 March 2023.