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APRIL 2021


'The rise of the road trip is evident'

Caravanning industry flourishing in epidemic as other industries flounder

Nick Baker: Pinpointing where travellers
have stepped in to fill the gap

By Dennis Amor
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WHILE many businesses floundered during Australia's COVID crisis, the caravanning industry actually flourished, according to a new report.

Travel technology company TripTech responsible for the popular CamperMate app which helps travellers to book caravan parks and rent campervans has been analysing the movements of independent travellers since the epidemic struck.

"The rise of the road trip is evident in the strength of the camping and caravanning sector," its Summer Report says.

"However, the focus has shifted away from iconic road trip destinations to more dynamic, regional trips."

The report points out that Australia's iconic, internationally-recognised road trips have "suffered greatly" with the decline in international visitors.

"But this has also spurred domestic travellers to visit previously less-frequented locations," the report points out.

"Landlocked by border closures, the new independent traveller has been travelling closer to home, and hopes have been pinned on their ability to fill the gap left by the international traveller."

TripTech data shows that the domestic market's thirst for planning, booking and exploring Australia has helped in the recovery of tourism, with a 43 percent increase in engagement over summer compared to the previous year.

The top 10 search terms in the locations category pointed to increased interest in two key regions: Western Australia's South West and Great Southern Region, and South Australia's Limestone Coast.

"This could be an indication of the domestic traveller's interest in new, regional journeys," the report suggests.

Travel time of at least five hours between major points of interest in these regions also showed positive signs for the desire to travel for extended periods.

TripTech & CamperMate chief executive Nick Baker said: "The analysis of the unique pre and in-trip behaviour of the domestic market pinpoints exactly where domestic travellers have stepped up to fill the gap left by international travellers, what regions have benefited and those that have been hardest hit by the pandemic.

"This report is the first in our Industry Intelligence Series to publish insights on passenger movement prior to and throughout the course of the pandemic.

"Our technology dashboards and heat maps provide tourism operators with a 360-degree view of the independent traveller and opportunities for promotion to the domestic market this year."

By geofencing each square kilometre of Australia through a unique grid reference, TripTech analyses fluctuations in arrivals, visitation, behaviour, points of interest and passenger movement, combined with in-app search and keyword trends.

With 150,000 monthly active users and 3.5 million monthly map engagements, the report includes an analysis of visitation by state, interstate movements, regional and council travel patterns and engagement with experiences along the route.

Wineries and breweries plus walks and trails were among the experiences with the highest engagement rates.

Using TripTech’s road trip dashboards commissioned by Tourism Australia to monitor patterns over summer, there was strong evidence in the decline of iconic, internationally recognised road trips and a renewed interest for regional getaways in South Australia, Victoria and Western Australia.

The report is available for download at


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Copyright 2005 Dennis Amor
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