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JATA Independent Surveys

(March 24, 2010)
Both Overseas and Domestic DI are showing signs of recovery.
Headline


In order to better assess prevailing business conditions, JATA (Japan Association of Travel Agents) keeps abreast of changes in the travel market by carrying out a quarterly survey of market trends among member companies, indexed by travel type, destination and customer segment.
(An overview of the survey results is provided below)
According to the "JATA Survey on Travel Market Trends" conducted from mid to late February 2010, Overseas DI showed its third consecutive increase while Domestic DI rose for the first time in six months and is expected to continue on its upward trend over the following three months.


Business Activity for the Overseas Travel Market Overall

All destinations are showing signs of recovery with Asia looking particularly strong. Over the following three months, all destinations, with the exception of Oceania, are expected to improve with a strong improvement expected in the senior segment.


Current Situation: All travel destinations showed signs of improvement with Asia in particular performing strongly.
"Booking numbers and sales have increased compared to bookings for the same period last year." (Full-service travel agency)
"There are a large number of bookings for groups in connection with Expo Shanghai 2010." (Overseas travel wholesaler)
"Bookings for Europe are strong. Consumers that put off travel last year due to the H1N1 virus or opted for short-haul destinations are showing signs of return." (First-tier retail agency)
DI for the overseas travel market overall rose 16 points to -50 compared to that of the previous three months (October to December).

Outlook for the Next Three Months (April to June): The outlook for the next three months is for continued growth with high expectations for the strongly performing senior segment and travel to China.
"The number of senior travelers (aged 60 or over) is on the increase." (Full-service travel agency)
"China as a destination had been performing poorly in the past .However is now showing signs of recovery in connection with Expo Shanghai 2010." (Second-tier travel agency)
Overseas DI is expected to rise a further 18 points to -32 over the following three months including the Golden Week holiday period (April to June).

Summary
Asian destinations have continued to perform strongly. China in particular is expected to show strong growth in connection with Expo Shanghai 2010. Demand for overseas travel declined last year as a result of the H1N1 virus. However, demand for travel to Europe in the senior segment is forecast to increase and we expect a further increase in demand for the overseas travel market overall.



(Units: DI)

 

2 years ago (Jan to Mar) 1.5 years ago (Jul to Sep) 15 months ago (Oct to Dec) 1 year ago (Jan to Mar) 9 months ago (Apr to Jun) 6 months ago (Jul to Sep) 3 months ago (Oct to Dec) Current (Jan to Mar) Next 3 months (Apr to Jun)
All foreign travel -33 -62 -64 -72 -80 -72 -66 -50 -32
*-62





* Prospective figures for Dec 2009 survey

 

1.5 years ago (Jul to Sep) 15 months ago (Oct to Dec) 1 year ago (Jan to Mar) 9 months ago (Apr to Jun) 6 months ago (Jul to Sep) 3 months ago (Oct to Dec) Current
(Jan to Mar)
Next 3 months (Apr to Jun)
Full- service travel agency -81 -81 -66 -76 -60 -46 -33 -12
Overseas travel wholesaler -82 -87 -85 -84 -72 -83 -68 -45
Overseas travel specialist agency -64 -64 -82 -100 -73 -89 -63 0
First-tier retail agency -73 -80 -81 -77 -86 -64 -64 -45
Second-tier retail agency -60 -53 -62 -74 -71 -67 -50 -35
In-house travel agency

-36 -54 -84 -95 -72 -65 -36 -30

Trends in Overseas Travel Demand (by customer segment)

Figures for all customer segments improved including the student segment on the back of the student holiday season. Over the next three months, the senior segment and family segment are expected to increase by 21 points and 15 points respectively.

In comparison with the three months from October to December, customer segment DI for the student segment increased by 12 points on the back of the student holiday season. In other customer segments, the female office worker, incentive, and business/technical visit segments all rose 7 points. Compared to the same time last year, the honeymoon segment fell 2 points. However the senior segment showed a significant increase of 15 points with the female office worker and business/technical visit segments also increasing by 10 points. The family and incentive segments also showed increases of 9 points and 8 points respectively.
Over the next three months including the Golden Week holiday period (April to June), the senior segment is expected to increase 21 points, the family segment 15 points with the honeymoon and incentive segments also forecast to increase by 11 points.



  1 year ago (Jan to Mar) 9 months ago (Apr to Jun) 6 months ago (Jul to Sep) 3 months ago (Oct to Dec) Current (Jan to Mar) Next 3 months (Apr to Jun)
Honeymoon -52 -68 -59 -57 -54 -43
Family -74 -77 -60 -66 -65 -50
Female office worker -69 -73 -63 -66 -59 -51
Students -63 -82 -73 -75 -63 -65
Senior* -46 -62 -42 -33 -31 -10
Incentive** -79 -88 -81 -78 -71 -60
Business /technical visit -73 -86 -80 -70 -63 -54
*Senior: Customers aged 60 or over.
**Incentive: Travel offered as an incentive to business and organization employees.
Trends in Overseas Travel Demand (by destination)

Overseas DI showed increases for all destinations. Asia in particular showed robust growth of 18 points. Over the next three months, China is expected to show substantial improvement and America/Canada and Europe are forecast to follow suit.

In comparison with the three months from October to December, Asia showed robust growth of 18 points. All other destination segments posted increases with Oceania at 13 points, Hawaii and Europe 11 points, China 8 points, Micronesia 7 points, and America/Canada 6 points. All destinations posted increases compared to the same period last year with China in particular posting a massive increase of 47 points, followed by Europe at 31 points, Asia at 16 points, Hawaii at 13 points and America/Canada and Micronesia posting increases of 10 points and 8 points respectively.
Further growth is expected over the next three months (April to June) with China and America/Canada expected to show increases of 18 points and 17 points respectively.



  1 year ago (Jan to Mar) 9 months ago (Apr to Jun) 6 months ago (Jul to Sep) 3 months ago (Oct to Dec) Current (Jan to Mar) Next 3 months (Apr to Jun)
Hawaii -63 -71 -60 -61 -50 -43
USA / Canada -79 -84 -80 -75 -69 -52
Europe -70 -67 -53 -50 -39 -30
Oceania -76 -79 -84 -78 -65 -67
Micronesia -61 -68 -54 -60 -53 -48
China -82 -68 -59 -43 -35 -17
Asia -39 -58 -45 -41 -23 -19

About the Survey on Travel Market Trends

In January 2009, JATA (Japan Association of Travel Agents) asked all member companies to register as survey monitors and 608 companies did so.
The quarterly Survey on Travel Market Trends seeks to grasp trends in the market based on responses to a questionnaire on conditions now and those anticipated over the next three months.
The survey asks participating companies to rate their sales results for each destination and customer segment by choosing from three categories: "good," "average" and "poor". Respondents indicate "do not handle" for items outside their business scope. Each share of "good," "average" and "poor" is then divided respectively by the denominator, which is equal to the total number of responses minus the "do not handle" and "no reply" responses. Finally each share is processed into the Diffusion Index (DI). The highest possible index figure is +100, and the lowest is -100.


Survey Overview

Survey area: Japan nationwide
Survey target: JATA member company management
Survey method: Internet survey
Survey period: From Wednesday, February 10, 2010 to Wednesday, February 24, 2010
Registered companies: 608
Responding companies: 211
Response rate: 34.7%


Business Classification

The JATA Survey on Travel Market Trends analyzes business conditions based on business content. A definition of each business classification and the number of respondents to the survey is shown below.


Designation Definition Respondents
Full- service travel agency A large-scale travel agency with a national network that provides a full range of travel products 26
Overseas travel wholesaler A dedicated overseas travel wholesaler 22
Overseas travel specialist agency A travel agency with a business volume of more than 5 billion yen, 80% of which is related to overseas travel 9
Domestic travel wholesaler A dedicated domestic travel wholesaler 8
First-tier retail agency Other than the above, a travel agency with a business volume of 3 billion yen or higher 27
Second-tier retail agency

Other than the above, a travel agency with a business volume of less than 3 billion yen 76
In-house travel agency A travel agency which mainly handles travel arrangements for its parent company 43

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