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Discovering local cuisine, the heart and soul of a trip

October 3, 2017 Hotel News No Comments Email Email

Cultural visits are all well and good but they make you hungry! Traveling naturally offers the opportunity to discover the history of a country and its culture, but for many, it is also the chance to enjoy local culinary specialties which are sometimes surprising., along with the GFK market research institute1, has taken a look into vacationers’ plates, revealing all their secrets according to their nationality, age, etc. Everything went under the microscope!

Key findings from the study in figures:

  • 54%: the percentage of people surveyed who said discovering local cuisine was a must on a trip
  • 48% of travelers said that breakfast is the hotel service they miss the most once their vacation is over
  • Chinese travelers really enjoy discovering new flavors while traveling (66% of them) but, in contrast, 69% of them missed their own culinary customs when abroad.

Trying out new flavors? This is a must when traveling! 54% of people surveyed said culinary discoveries were an integral part of the trip. This eating-based approach to a stay is particularly popular with 50-65 year olds (61%) compared with 48% of 18-34 year olds. Do millennials lack curiosity?

Unmissable France!

Bravo! The top destination for food-loving travelers is France. When 38% of Germans go there for the food, 20% of Chinese people enjoy tasting what they consider to be peculiar specialties and 14% of British people to enjoy the obligatory croissant.

Are the French a little too sure of their culinary heritage? In any case, 39% of them consider the culinary experience to be the top criterion during a trip in France, while on average respondents listed the French gastronomic experience as their third selection criterion after visiting the Eiffel Tower and historical sites.

The French are certainly still very focused on good food since, in response to the question asking what they would do if they were given €20,000 to plan their stay, 41% (vs. the average of 34%) said they would go to a Michelin-starred restaurant.


Among the services offered in hotels, it is breakfast that makes travelers misty eyed: 48% of respondents across all nationalities were sad not to be able to enjoy this tasty treat when they return home.

Here, the gender difference was significant, with 53% of women enjoying a genuine moment of relaxation at breakfast, compared with 43% of men.

Going off the beaten track, or not

It’s possible to travel with the aim of finding out about new cuisines while still missing your own when you’re a long way from home. This is particularly the case for Chinese travelers, 66% of whom said they traveled to enjoy local specialties with 69% saying they missed their own culinary customs.

For European travelers, the trend reversed with 45% stating they could do without their own cuisine for the duration of the trip. The percentage is particularly high for the British, with 36% not even thinking about it, obviouslyJ. As for the millennials, are culinary customs second nature to them? At any rate, 37% of them said so: yes, they missed their culinary habits when traveling! Just 21% of them said they didn’t think about them at all when far from home…

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