S. Korean young consumers indulge in special package tours instead of free traveling

By Park Sae-jin Posted : June 9, 2023, 16:11 Updated : June 9, 2023, 16:11

[Gettyimages Bank]

SEOUL -- Influenced by popular YouTube creators and other social media viral content, young consumers in their 20s and 30s choose to go on special package tours organized by travel companies instead of free traveling in domestic and overseas tourist hotspots.
Package tours became popular in South Korea in the 1980s when the general financial level of the people improved enough for them to go on short trips. Organized trips offered transport, accommodation, attraction, and meals so that participants do not have to plan anything during their trip. Package tours were favored by middle-aged and elderly people while young people organized their own trips by gathering data from travel information books and offline community meetings.
According to Modoo Tour, a major travel company in South Korea, some 95 percent of travelers who joined special package tours were in their 20s and 30s. The special tour programs include trips to overseas cities like Hong Kong with popular influencers. A tour package to Hong Kong was all sold out in just 30 seconds after it went on sale through the travel agency's online shopping mall.
"Because the market demand for special trips that offer unique memories of traveling, and the influence of travel video content creators have increased, we analyzed that the demand for trips with influencers have also increased," a Modoo Tour official said in a statement on June 9.
In a bid to capture young consumers, Interpark, South Korea's largest online ticket and reservation service operator, established a new division that focuses on the development of themed travel products. The online travel agency sent off a team of travelers on a six-day trip to Thailand with Kim Ja-in, a 34-year-old professional climber.
"Because we developed package tours that have different styles compared to conventional trip programs, we can now offer different travel experiences for customers visiting the same spot over and over," an Interpark official said. 
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