Youth Pursue Meaningful and Engaging Travel Experiences

by Alice

Quark, the Alibaba-operated search engine, has observed a notable 40 percent increase in travel-related searches in the first quarter of 2024, with 18 to 35-year-olds constituting a significant 75 percent of the demographic.

In its recently released report on 2024 Youth Travel Trends, Quark highlights a shift in preferences among young travelers, who now prioritize experiences that go beyond mere sightseeing. Exploration, deep immersion, emotional connection, and spiritual fulfillment are among the key factors driving their travel choices.


The data also indicates that events such as concerts, music festivals, and comic conventions are triggering impromptu travel plans among the youth. Moreover, weekend getaways and off-peak trips are gaining popularity alongside extended holidays, with Friday to Sunday evenings emerging as peak times for searches related to “short trips” by young adults. This trend persists even in the week following extended holidays.


Xiong Haifeng, an associate professor at the School of Cultural Industries Management at the Communication University of China, underscores the growing convergence of entertainment and tourism, particularly for young travelers. This blend, characterized by interest-driven content, emotional appeal, and quality service, not only enhances travel experiences but also contributes to local economies by fostering increased consumption.


Quark’s data further reveals a significant uptick in searches for concerts, music festivals, comic conventions, and marathons among young adults. Concert and music festival searches have surged by 40 percent and 50 percent year-on-year, respectively, with the majority of users falling within the 18 to 30 age bracket. Similarly, searches related to comic conventions have seen a remarkable 445 percent increase year-on-year, predominantly driven by young adults aged 18 to 24. Furthermore, searches for marathons among users under 30 have risen by 182 percent year-on-year, with the 18 to 24 age group representing over 61 percent of the searches.

Huang Chuxin, deputy director of the School of Journalism and Communication at the University of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, interprets this trend as reflective of evolving consumer behaviors and values among young people. Quality experiences, emotional connections, and personal expression now take precedence over mere consumption, reshaping the landscape of youth travel experiences.



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