UAE residents are spontaneous travellers, and are adventurous at heart, says a survey.

A research report produced by Skyscanner, a global flight, car hire and hotel marketplace, in association with OnePoll, says that UAE residents embrace spontaneity, especially in travel. Savvy UAE residents have long taken pride in being adventurous at heart with 94% considering themselves, spontaneous.

A whopping 80% of UAE respondents claim to be more spontaneous now than they were before the pandemic struck. This is a result of the whirlwind of events that have clearly stirred up an irresistible desire for the unexpected, the unplanned, and the surprises that only a spontaneous journey can deliver.

In a world reshaped by a hunger for adventure, spontaneous holidays are becoming the new norm. Almost half (42%) of UAE travellers have arrived at the airport without a destination in mind and booked then and there, whilst a staggering 60% have booked a holiday less than a mere four days before departure.

And if you’re undecided about a gift idea for a loved one or friend, a resounding 63% of UAE travellers said they would feel happy, followed by grateful (23%), if a loved one surprised them with a spontaneous holiday.

Whilst most travellers would choose their spouse/partner for a spontaneous getaway, the study revealed that women are also leading this charge and emerging as twice as likely as their male counterparts to embark on a spontaneous solo escapade.

Commenting on the findings, Skyscanner's Travel Expert Ayoub El Mamoun said: “Embracing spontaneity isn't just about shaking up our routines, it's about the sheer joy of discovering new horizons or reuniting with family and friends at a moment’s notice that sends ripples of excitement and creates memories that last forever.

“As the world embarks on a renewed era of global travel, countless new flight routes connect us from all corners of the globe. Add to this the growing number of visa on arrival and visa-free travel options from the UAE, and easily and quickly searching and comparing cheap flights through sites like Skyscanner, and you've got the perfect recipe for the soaring trend of spontaneous holidays.”

Skyscanner’s flight pricing data shows that being flexible with where and when you travel is the key to unlocking the best prices. With 80 billion prices searched every single day, an ‘Everywhere’ search on Skyscanner for September reveals great value flights from the UAE for as little as AED78 to Kuwait, AED158 to Jordan, AED318 to Italy or AED365 to Greece in September!

Dr Saliha Afridi, Clinical Psychologist and Managing Director of The LightHouse Arabia highlights the benefits of spontaneous holidays: "Spontaneous travel offers many benefits, including increased mental wellbeing, enhanced creativity, and improved cognitive flexibility. Breaking out of routine to immerse yourself in new environments and cultures acts as a rejuvenating reset, effectively reducing stress and anxiety and promoting a healthy mindset.”

According to Skyscanner’s latest study, UAE residents still have an average of 14 days annual leave left to take this year. So, what are you waiting for? There is no better time to embark on a spontaneous holiday.

Skyscanner's Ayoub shares expert tips for booking spontaneous flights:

Consider ‘Everywhere’

“An ‘Everywhere’ search on Skyscanner is a great starting point for your next spontaneous break away! Ordered by price, an ‘everywhere’ search can inspire you to go somewhere you’ve never been before. In fact, ‘Everywhere’ is currently the 4th ‘destination’ for UAE travellers on Skyscanner right now.”

Flex those dates

“Searching by multiple dates and airports will give you the best chance of a bargain. Flight prices are all based on supply and demand. Because some dates are more popular than others, prices will vary. The ‘whole month’ search tool allows you to see cheap flights at a glance and pick the right deal for you. Flying on less popular days of the week is often cheaper.”

Mix & Match to save AED

“51% of UAE travellers say money is a key deciding factor in whether to organise a spontaneous trip. Being flexible in mixing up the airlines you choose to fly with can seriously cut costs. Fares don’t have to be booked as returns, look at flying out with one airline and back with another or out of one airport and back into another.”

Find a spontaneous friend

“If you struggle to be spontaneous and you know that you need that extra push to get you out of your comfort zone, enlist the help of your partner, friend or parent. Get them to plan some fun trips away and agree that they will only tell you where you are going a few hours before you need to set off.” 

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