Colombia's Travel Consumer: Where They Go, What They Buy, How They Pay

There are an estimated 3,800 traditional brick-and-mortar travel agencies distributed throughout Colombia. The Colombian Association of Travel Agents conducts a semi-annual survey to gauge general consumer trends and travel agent performance in the market. Here are some top-level findings interpreted from the data collected in the H1 2015 survey:

  • While most agencies indicated a general improvement in sales for both domestic and international flights in the first half of 2015, international flight sales weakened relative to domestic flights.
  • A weaker peso is one factor impacting international travel demand. Short-term visa restrictions for Colombians traveling to Europe were recently lifted. However, travel agents expressed concern that bookings for the first half of 2016 would be a slow period in travel. 
  • The United States is the top country destination for Colombian travelers. 
  • Latin America was the most sold region, followed by Europe. Mexico, Panama, and the Dominican Republic are among the most popular destinations within Latin America.
  • Beach and cruise vacations are the most popular travel product types sold. 
  • A significant share of travel booked is paid in cash rather then credit. Travel agencies are still in the business of financing vacations.
  • Packages and flights still make up the bulk of traditional travel agency sales, about 78%. Hotels account for about 9% of sales.
  • Of the 87 agencies surveyed, average sales were fairly evenly split between corporate and leisure travel. 

The following figures were created from the survey data:

Q1. How did 2015 H1 domestic and international bookings perform compared to 2014?

Base: 87 agencies

Q2:  Where did Colombians travel? Most sold international destinations

By Country

1)Surveyed agencies were asked to score 1-5 according to the importance of each segment. The scores were tallied and assigned a percentage. 2) Percentage of total locations

By Region

1)Surveyed agencies were asked to score 1-5 according to the importance of each segment. The scores were tallied and assigned a percentage. 2) Percentage of total locations

Q3:  Most sold international destinations within Latin America:

1)Surveyed agencies were asked to score 1-5 according to the importance of each segment. The scores were tallied and assigned a percentage. 2) Percentage of total locations

Q4:  Top sold destination types:

Surveyed agencies were asked to score 1-5 according to the importance of each segment. The scores were tallied and assigned a percentage. Base: 87 agencies

Q5:  Payment Method:

Base: 87 agencies

Q6:  Products sold, most frequently (% of total sales) :

Agencies surveyed were asked to respond between 1 and 100 percent according to importance of sales of each service. An average was established with these responses. Base: 87 Agencies

Agencies surveyed were asked to respond between 1 and 100 percent according to importance of sales of each service. An average was established with these responses. Base: 87 agencies