CAPA India was established more than 20 years ago with a mission to become a leader in global aviation knowledge. We have since built a worldwide portfolio of clients and experience, and an enviable reputation for independence, insight and integrity. Today, aviation businesses around the world turn to us for sound advice and research.
Expert insights into the world’s fastest-growing outbound travel market
2 November 2023
In 2019, there were almost 20 million international departures by Indian residents, which we (CAPA India) forecast to grow to 45 million by 2030, making India one of the most attractive source markets for destinations in the world. A key feature of the outbound market going forward will be the increasing share of discretionary leisure travel, which, over time, is likely to become the leading driver of traffic, whereas business, VFR and labour have historically been the primary purpose of international travel. As more Indians travel, and travel more often, their preferences are becoming increasingly diverse and sophisticated.
Dubai, Singapore and Thailand will remain perennial favourites, but our research indicates an increasing interest in destinations such as Azerbaijan, Egypt, Israel, Kazakhstan and Kenya, while long-haul demand for Australia, the US, Europe, South Africa and Latin America is growing. Meanwhile, younger travellers are increasingly seeking experiences, with holidays that revolve around adventure, activities and events.
The strength and resilience of the Indian outbound market is visible in the fact that several destinations have seen a faster recovery in Indian visitor arrivals after the pandemic than those from most other source markets.
Despite the tremendous potential, challenges remain. Air connectivity is a major constraint. The Indian international market remains highly under-penetrated. Historically, this has been due to Indian carriers not having the fleet to commit significant capacity to overseas routes, while most of the foreign carriers that were interested in expanding had exhausted their bilateral entitlements.
In addition, difficulties and delays associated with visa processing for Indian nationals have been a deterrent in the case of some destinations. Moreover, some tourism boards have not committed significant marketing budgets to India, believing erroneously, according to CAPA India, it to be a low-yield market.
The agenda at the virtual summit will address key questions such as:
- What is the expected stimulatory impact of a privatised and resurgent Air India and a highly ambitious IndiGo, both of which are placing increasing emphasis on international operations?
- Is India really a low-yield market? There is a sizeable market that has the interest and ability to spend more, but it is simply not being presented the right products or being approached through the right channels.
- Are the needs of premium Indian travellers and their appetite for luxury products and unique experiences being addressed?
- How can the travel and tourism industry better understand Indian travellers?
- What will it take to unlock the potential of the Indian outbound travel market?
In the 15 years before COVID, India’s domestic market was the fastest-growing in the world, while international traffic grew at around half the pace. However, there has been a material shift after the pandemic. “International is suddenly the new domestic”, with CAPA India forecasting both segments to grow at a similar rate through to 2030.
The virtual summit will offer critical insights to airlines, airport operators, travel agents, OTAs and tourism boards. The session will commence with an exclusive research briefing by CAPA India on the subject, followed by a series of panel discussions with key industry leaders.
- 2.00pm: Introduction and Key Themes
- 2.15pm: Exclusive research briefing by CAPA India on outbound travel addressing air connectivity, pricing, market segmentation, distribution, yields, marketing, product development, visa processing etc.
- 3.00pm: Destination Panel: The Perennial Favourites
- 3.40pm: Destination Panel: The New & Emerging Destinations
- 4.20pm: Destination Panel: The Rise of Long Haul Travel
- 5.00pm: Close of Summit