The Index reveals luxury travelers still prefer European destinations, with Greece as the most popular country, but Asia and the Middle East are gaining
This post first appeared at

SAN FRANCISCO — July 23, 2015 –Switchfly, Inc., the technology company powering travel search/booking and loyalty point redemption solutions for the world’s most celebrated brands, today announced its 2015 Luxury Travel Index. The destinations were ranked by average length of stay, using data from Switchfly’s global booking engine, and give some insight into the traveling habits of people flying first class and sleeping five star. The data revealed, among other things, that although the majority of top luxury travel destinations are European, the top two luxury travel destinations are in Asia and the Middle East, respectively, and that luxury travelers are spending at least twice as much time on their vacation as the average American does.

Seoul, South Korea — bustling metropolis, international business hub, and jumping-off point for many Asia-bound travelers — topped Switchfly’s Luxury Travel list with an average visit time of 13 days. Dubai, UAE, home of the world’s busiest international airport, took #2, with an average trip time of 12.7 days. Milan, Italy (12.3 days), Athens, Greece (11.5 days), and Singapore (11.1 days) rounded out the top 5. 
Switchfly’s research also discovered that the average Luxury Travel vacation is more than a week long, and the top 15 destinations vary from an average length of stay of 8.3 days in Miami, Florida, USA to 13 days in Seoul, South Korea.  Greece’s economic problems have been a boon to travelers, and the country ranks as the most popular country with three cities in the Top 15. Athens, Greece is the 4th most popular Luxury Travel destinations, while Crete and Mykonos come in at #12 and #13, respectively.
“We’re delighted to share a snapshot of where and how people are traveling around the world this year,” said Daniel Farrar, Chief Executive Officer at Switchfly. “Every year economic, social, and political events affect travel trends, and this year we’ve seen a rise in travel to Greece as the country’s economic crisis had made travel more affordable. Brazil also saw a boost in Luxury Travel, most likely due to last summer’s FIFA World Cup.”
Switchfly’s Top 15 Luxury Travel Destinations (By Length of Stay):
1.      Seoul, South Korea (13.0 days)
2.      Dubai, UAE (12.7 days)
3.      Milan, Italy (12.3 days)
4.      Athens, Greece (11.5 days)
5.      Singapore (11.1 days)
6.      Frankfurt, Germany (11 days)
7.      Sao Paulo, Brazil (tied – 10.6 days)
7.      Hong Kong, China (tied – 10.6 days)
9.      Bali, Indonesia (10 days)
10.  Lisbon, Portugal (9.7 days)
11.  Tokyo, Japan (9.6 days)
12.  Crete, Greece (9.2 days)
13.  Mykonos, Greece (8.7 days)
14.  Rome, Italy (8.5 days)
15.  Miami, Florida, USA (8.3 days)
Luxury travel dominated by European and Asian destinations
Together, Asian and European destinations dominate the industry with 13-out-of 15 of the most popular destinations. While the continent of Europe still holds a majority share of destinations on the list (7 out of 15), Asia is hot on its heels with 5 of the 15 top spots and 2 in the top 5 (Seoul and Singapore). The Americas, on the other hand, only placed twice in the top 15, and not strongly: Sao Paolo, Brazil tied with Hong Kong for 7th place and Miami, Florida — the only U.S.A. destination to place at all — came in 15th, with an average luxury trip of 8.3 days.

Switchfly, Inc. is a global technology company that powers travel shopping and loyalty redemption solutions for some of the world’s most recognizable brands across airlines, hotels, financial services and ecommerce. World-class products delivered via a flexible software-as-a-service platform let clients easily launch and maintain a complete omnichannel travel and loyalty experience superior to any online travel agency. Tailored to their customer needs while maintaining a full brand match, Switchfly solutions drive customer engagement, enhance brand loyalty and increase profit. Founded in 2003 and headquartered in San Francisco, the Company generates more than $1.25 billion USD in revenue for its clients annually and facilitates the redemption of more than 35 billion reward points and miles annually. The company’s global client roster includes American Airlines, Emirates, JetBlue and LAN Airlines; IAG Avios, Lufthansa Miles & More and United MileagePlus; InterContinental Hotels Group and Starwood Hotels; Expedia, Orbitz, Priceline and Groupon. For more information, visit

By Zen Chi

Leave a Reply