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May 22, 2020 OTA News No Comments Email Email

Travel might be on hold in these extraordinary times, but new data from reveals that this has not stopped Aussies from dreaming about its possibilities. Delving into the thousands of local travel wish lists created by hopeful travellers on its platform over the last two months, shares some of the top destinations and properties on Aussies’ minds as restrictions ease in each state.

Since Australian Coronavirus restrictions began in March, the top wish-listed destinations for Aussies are still traditional favorites of Bali, Indonesia, United States of America, United Kingdom, and Italy,  highlighting that locals aren’t deterred from travelling to the countries worst affected by the pandemic.

Interestingly, New Zealand only placed at #7 on wish lists, posing the question whether Aussies will reconsider their dream destination if the ‘trans-Tasman bubble’ opens potentially as early as June. 

Top 10 AU international country destinations wish listed

1)      Indonesia

2)      United States of America

3)      Thailand

4)      United Kingdom

5)      Japan

6)      New Zealand

7)      Italy

8)      Greece

9)      Vietnam

10)   France

While international destinations like Bali, London and Tokyo continue to inspire travel dreams for people across the country, it’s actually domestic stays that feature in over half (49%) of all those wish listed by Aussies during this time of uncertainty, a jump from the same time last year when domestic properties

accounted for less than a third (28%) of those wish listed.

Closer to home, the top domestic destinations wish-listed by Australians included main centers such Melbourne, Sydney, The Gold Coast, Brisbane, and Perth, suggesting that travel for business and staycations are at the forefront of travel imaginations.

Outside of the state capitals though, the wish list data showed that Aussies are eager to support their regional tourism hotspots including Cairns, Byron Bay and Port Douglas. 

Top AU local destinations (excluding state capitals) wish listed:

1)      Gold Coast

2)      Cairns

3)      Byron Bay

4)      Port Douglas

5)      Noosa Heads

6)      Airlie Beach

7)      Newcastle

8)      Mooloolaba

9)      Coffs Harbour

10)   Port Macquarie

Top AU overall local destinations wish listed:

1)      Melbourne

2)      Sydney

3)      Gold Coast

4)      Brisbane

5)      Perth

6)      Adelaide

7)      Cairns

8)      Byron Bay

9)      Port Douglas

10)   Canberra

Some of the top wish-listed accommodations to stay in Australia include Imagine Marco (Melbourne), Q1 Resort & Spa (Gold Coast) and Rhapsody Resort (Gold Coast).

Dreaming about a change in scenery and the opportunity to enjoy a stay experience outside of their own home, the most wish-listed type of places to stay for Australians is hotels, followed by aparthotels and apartments. Aparthotels account for 15% of all properties wish listed by Australians over the last two months, noticeably higher than the global average of 5%.

Luke Wilson, Area Manager for Australia at, said: “These are extraordinary and challenging times in which safety remains the top priority. We also know that in such times, dreaming about experiencing the world again has immense power to fire our imaginations and keep spirits high. 

It’s not surprising to see the major centres topping wish lists for travel even during lockdown restrictions and we’ve seen this more obvious trend in some of the data trends released earlier this week. Promising appetite for regional tourist hubs and gateway destinations such as the Gold Coast, Cairns and Byron Bay all indicate that Aussie families are still eager to get away for the upcoming June long weekend and further out to the next school holidays. 

Coastal and country regional destinations that have been severely impacted by Coronavirus directly following a devastating bushfire season need local tourists more than ever. It’s positive to see that Tourism Australia’s ‘Live from Aus’ has helped build confidence in local travel as we’ve seen with our

customers as they start planning their next domestic trip. Wish listing can be an inspirational way for everyone to start dreaming about travel again, and we are committed to making it easy for them to turn those dreams into reality when the time is right.”

A wish list is a collection of ‘liked’ properties that customers can create on Customers are encouraged to save accommodations to a wish list by clicking the heart button that can be found

alongside every property listing on the platform.

*Methodology: based on comparing wish list data on between March and April 2020 to the same months in 2019. Customers on can wish list properties by clicking the ‘heart’ button present on every property’s listing on the platform.

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