Digital Travel Sales in Western Europe Will Pass $141 Billion - eMarketer
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Digital Travel Sales in Western Europe Will Pass $141 Billion

But 2017's increase below global average

August 2, 2017 | Retail & Ecommerce | Travel

Digital travel sales in Western Europe, which include airline tickets, car rentals, cruises and transportation spending, as well as hotels and other accommodation—including Airbnb—will reach $141.68 billion this year, up 5.7% vs. 2016, according to eMarketer’s latest forecast of the region’s travel-related ecommerce activity.

Overall digital travel spending growth in Western Europe in 2017 will slow from the 7.1% increase seen in 2016, as adoption of digital travel booking matures further.

From a global perspective, only North America’s expected increase of 5.1% will be less robust than Western Europe’s this year, with both regions well below the 11.7% increase anticipated worldwide. Because of the slowdown, Western Europe’s share of global digital travel sales will shrink 1.3 percentage points to 23.1%.

Sales growth within the region will be mixed, running the gamut from Spain’s 9.0% increase to Finland’s 2.8% expansion.

Western Europe’s largest market for digital travel sales, the UK, will record the region’s second largest increase (7.2%), with spending forecast to reach $35.42 billion (£26.24 billion) for the year.

UK Digital Travel Sales, 2016-2021 (billions of £ and % change)

But digital travel sales growth in Western Europe’s two other leading markets—France and Germany—will be below the regional average. In France, spending will swell 4.1% to $20.41 billion (€18.45 billion). In Germany, sales will rise 4.2% to $27.44 billion (€24.80 billion).

Throughout the region, digital travel spending preferences will continue to evolve, with digitally derived accommodation options like Airbnb continuing to attract converts.

“Airbnb is growing quickly in Western Europe, albeit from a small base, in large part because of travelers’ increasing independence and desire to live like locals,” said Jaimie Chung, forecasting analyst at eMarketer. “The company has some legal hurdles in the region—not unlike in the US—but it continues to expand to additional major cities. We’ll have to see if it continues to grow after all of the low-hanging fruit is picked.”

For more on eMarketer’s latest estimates of digital travel sales in Europe and worldwide, see our August 2017 report, “Worldwide Digital Travel Sales: eMarketer’s Estimates for 2016–2021.” [eMarketer PRO subscribers can access the report here. Nonsubscribers can purchase the report here].

—eMarketer Editors

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