The Traveller survey has now been conducted for the third year in a row. This year’s report shows that Swedes appreciate travel to a very high degree – four out of ten Swedes think they give higher priority to travel abroad today than they did 5-10 years ago. And it is quite clear that the airport today is an important part of the entire travel experience – as many as seven out of ten Swedes feel a sense of anticipation at the airport.
“We see that travellers like to come early to the airport to feel that special sense of anticipation which is part of the airport’s atmosphere. More than half are at the airport at least an hour before their departure, and we are continually developing the airport to satisfy passengers’ desires for new experiences. Their trip begins at the airport,” says Kjell-Åke Westin, airport director at Stockholm Arlanda Airport.
More than half of Swedish travellers want to be at the airport at least an hour before their departure, and over a third want to be there more than two hours in advance in order to have time to shop and go to cafés, restaurants and bars. Stockholmers like to spend their time at the airport shopping – 16 per cent ¬– or having a cup of coffee and something to eat – also 16 per cent. The most popular activity, however, is socialising with fellow travellers – 18 per cent. As many as 45 per cent of Stockholmers pack a laptop or tablet, more than other region in the country. And checking in using an automated machine is most popular; 55 per cent choose to do so compared to 37 per cent who want personal service.
“Many of our passengers fly on business and are frequent visitors to the airport. For them, convenience and efficiency are especially important in every aspect of the travel experience, from the time they arrive in the terminal to the time they take off. For us, it is important to meet these needs and think innovatively about how, among other things, self-service can improve the passenger experience when we develop our airport for the future,” says Peder Grunditz, airport director at Bromma Stockholm Airport.
Stockholmers think that the airport’s atmosphere is important for the travel experience. As many as 68 per cent think that is fairly or very important. They also seem to be hard-working; as many as 29 per cent want better opportunities to work, with good Wi-Fi and printing possibilities. Some 35 per cent want food courts, with dishes from all around the world. Another 16 per cent want art experiences. Sleeping pods and Swedish design are also on Stockholmers’ wish lists.
What respondents generally were looking for was good shopping; almost four out of ten gave this top priority. In Stockholm, that figure is even higher – 45 per cent. The most typical shopping allowance for Swedish travellers in SEK 500, but young people spend a little less. The item showing the greatest increase in demand is reading for the trip – up 50 per cent from the year before; 39 per cent of Swedes shop for this. As a result, books, newspapers and magazines ended up in second place on the list. Sweets still top the shopping list, with 42 per cent. In Stockholm, reading for the trip ranks highest, at 47 per cent, ahead of sweets, at 44 per cent.
- Women have a greater feeling of anticipation than men. Seven out of ten Swedes feel a sense of anticipation at the airport. Among women, that figure is 74 per cent. People from Gotland have the greatest sense of anticipation – as many as 82 per cent. For people from Stockholm, the figure is 65 per cent.
- Young travellers feel more excited at the airport – 34 per cent compared to the average of 20 per cent. Young men often feel stressed – as many as 24 per cent compared to the average of 13 per cent. Stockholmers are a little bit stressed and excited – 18 and 19 per cent, respectively.
- One out of five men prefer to spend time in a bar – 21 per cent of men prefer to sit in the bar and drink beer, wine or another alcoholic beverage. Women prefer to spend time talking with their fellow travellers – 20 per cent – or having a cup of coffee and something to eat – 18 per cent. Shopping is popular among Stockholmers, at 16 per cent.
- Almost three out of four people, 72 per cent, decide at least three months in advance where they will travel. The most common thing is to decide about three months before the trip – 42 per cent. In Stockholm, 43 per cent decide three months in advance, while 22 per cent decide one month in advance.
- A pen, a camera and medicine are packed. More than half of Swedes have a pen in their hand baggage – 54 per cent. Some 45 per cent pack a camera, and 44 per cent take medicine with them. Laptops and tablets have increased, with 38 per cent of travellers taking one this year, compared to 31 per cent last year. Stockholmers like to pack a laptop or an iPad, at 45 per cent.
- Women want to have the most time at the airport. Some 38 per cent of women want at least two hours at the airport compared to 32 per cent for men. It is most common to want to spend at least an hour at the airport – 58 per cent compared to 55 per cent last year.
- One out of three people update their social media at the airport. Facebook is on top, at 26 per cent, followed by Instagram, at 13 per cent. Updates are more important for women than for men; 34 per cent of women think it is fairly or very important to update their social media. The corresponding figure for men is 24 per cent. Some 31 per cent of travellers from Stockholm think it is fairly or very important.
- Travellers want to enjoy time with their partner on their trip. The greatest number of travellers indicate they want to spend time with their partner and/or family – as many as 24 per cent. Some 19 per cent are looking for total relaxation, while 17 per cent want insight and knowledge.
About the survey
The Traveller survey of Swedes’ views of travel, holidaymaking and airports around the world was conducted by TNS Sifo on behalf of Swedavia. Respondents between the ages of 18 and 79 were randomly selected. A total of 4,428 people took part. The survey is web-based and was carried out August 15–September 22, 2014. A total of 448 people from Stockholm were interviewed, with 317 respondents who answered yes to the question whether they had flown on holiday over the past year constituting the basis of the survey results.