Travel Marketing Trends 2023: New Destinations For Your Brand Campaigns

After a two-year hiatus, 2023 is all about revenge travel.

Despite the pressures of inflation, people are eager to make up for lost time and missed experiences and adventures.

In fact, an American Express Travel survey indicates that 74% of consumers are likely to spend more for the ultimate getaway in 2023.

Meanwhile, half of global travelers want to embark on new cultural experiences, according to’s latest travel research. If that’s not enough to convince you, how about this: the U.S. Transportation Security Administration (TSA) recently recorded the highest daily total of airline passengers since February 2020. 

As desire to travel continues to gain ground, brands that are plugged into their audiences – forging deep and personalized connections – will be part of the destination in the year ahead. Travel marketers, take note of the following key industry trends in 2023, so you can plan campaigns that hit the mark with your audiences:

Adventure calls (including remote work), but keep it green 

While travelers are eager to plan new adventures, there will be new financial, emotional, and practical factors that consumers will consider from brands. For example, 69% of travel seekers are determined to make more sustainable and planet-preserving choices in the year ahead. European travelers, especially those in Italy (60%), Germany (64%), and Spain (70%) prefer to pay more for eco-friendly experiences, according to the Global Web Index.
Moreover, digital nomadism is bigger than ever before with 43.3% of the total global workforce expected to be remote workers – a fact that will likely enable many in the workforce to fit vacation into their vocation, and increase travel demand for the foreseeable future.

Sightseeing starts with… site seeing

With growing demand comes more opportunities for travel brands to engage with their audiences. Indeed, the industry anticipates a 20% increase in digital ad spend for 2023. Brands might play it ‘safe’, relying on traditional marketing channels that have worked in the past; however, while paid search and social channels are still useful, digital marketing is shifting in new directions. 

Recent Global Web Index reports show that travel enthusiasts are just as likely to discover a new brand from an ad on the open web (31%) as they are on social media (32%). In addition, according to Expedia, travelers can visit up to 38 sites before finalizing their itinerary, making it appealing for travel companies such as VisitDenmark to extend their channel mix by leveraging open-web campaigns for business growth. 

Travelers are curious and they consume all kinds of content

Travel is a big-decision industry. Consumers spend a lot of time planning and booking their trips; they are also naturally curious, and open to learning about new things. This is good news, not just for travel companies but all kinds of businesses.   

To put it simply, travel consumers aren’t just reading the travel section; Outbrain’s click-based, first-party data shows that travel customers are also interested in news, sports, lifestyle, photography, and other category content. By advertising on the open web, travel advertisers can connect with audiences effectively via their other interests and online content consumption patterns.

It’s all about context

As the depreciation of third-party cookies looms, travel brands can benefit much from contextual targeting to deliver better ad relevance and engagement. Leveraging privacy-safe data signals, such as location and weather, advertisers can make sure they’re getting the most out of open-web campaigns through timely and tailored messaging. At a time where brands want to make every ad dollar count, the new era of contextual keeps privacy and consumer experience at the forefront of digital marketing efforts.

Outbrain has helped travel brands of all sizes connect to new audiences by paying attention to engagement. That’s because we understand that companies don’t control the travel journey, their audiences do.

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