Travel BlogDecember 28, 2020

Do You Know the Most Popular Travel Destination of 2021? It’s Maldives!

A new study by Club Med has revealed which destinations people are looking to travel to in 2021 by analyzing Google search data and Maldives has emerged as the most popular travel destination of 2021.

In the most unusual year for travel, the study looked at where people are most desperate to go to in the new year. With ever changing restrictions, a pandemic meaning some countries were less safe to travel to than usual and a country dying to get out of their homes and into a new environment, the results were revealing.

Top 10 travel destinations of 2021 – RANKED

RankingCountrySearch Volume
1Maldives2,960
2Mexico2,930
3Thailand1,600
4Turkey1,300
5Spain880
6USA730
7Malta720
8Portugal590
9Mauritius480
10South Africa390

Exotic international travel destinations reign supreme as the most popular countries people want to visit in 2021. Holidaymakers seem to be looking to travel far from home next year with the Maldives as the country at the top of people’s list.

Mexico and Thailand come in 2nd and 3rd, each country as exotic as the last. Looking at Europe Brits want to travel to Turkey, Spain and Malta in the new year following a trend of people wanting to go to sunny spots over more prominent winter destinations.

Recent booking data from Club Med also shows that Italy has recently been a popular choice. Kamarina in Sicily saw a large increase of 214% in September compared to the same time last year while Cefalù, also in Sicily, saw an ever larger increase of 350%.

Top 10 travel destinations of 2020 – RANKED

RankingCountrySearch Volume
1Greece74,500
2Maldives74,200
3Turkey74,000
4Mexico49,550
5Spain49,500
6United Kingdom49,470
7Barbados33,400
8Croatia33,350
9Cyprus33,100
10Thailand33,000

Greece came out as the top destination for people in the UK looking to get away after a long year of uncertainty and restrictions. The country was one of the first to open back up to travelers after the first lockdown, and since then has been a popular spot for Brits.

The Maldives is the 2nd most popular country. People who have saved up over lockdown may now have more disposable income meaning a Maldives holiday that may traditionally be too expensive is now officially on the cards. Turkey came in third place with a mad rush of people looking to travel to the country once restrictions were lifted. Club Med has seen a 155% increase in booking to their Palmiye resort in September compared to the same time last year.

People looking to travel closer to home and spend their holidays in the UK increased massively over the past year with 49,470 people looking for staycations. With more restrictions preventing people from taking an overseas holiday, they instead spent time exploring the great outdoors in their own country.

Maldives reopened borders to all nationalities from 15th July 2020. All visitors are granted a 30-day free on-arrival visa with a confirmed booking for a stay at any registered tourist facility in the country.

Maldives has also extended ‘Split Stay’ for all types of tourist accommodation facilities, allowing tourists to split their stay between resort, hotels, guesthouses and liveaboard boats, with prior approval as per split-stay procedure and guideline by the Ministry of Tourism.

While there is no mandatory quarantine or testing on arrival, tourists traveling to Maldives are required to complete an online health declaration form and provide a negative PCR test result taken at least 96 hours prior to their departure.

The negative PCR test result must be attached while completing Traveler Health Declaration form, which has to be submitted online via IMUGA (www.imuga.immigration.gov.mv), by all arriving passengers before arrival (but not exceeding 24 hours before arrival time).

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