A new study by Germany’s largest market research organization, GfK, highlights the enormous market potential of leisure-vehicle holidaying. In the representative survey, nearly a quarter of the respondents (22 percent) stated that they can imagine going on holiday at some point during the next five years in a caravan or motor caravan. If this figure is extrapolated to the aggregate German (online) population, it works out to some 14.2 million German citizens. The study also shows that leisure-vehicle holidaying appeals in particular to people between the age of 23 and 37, and to individuals with above-average incomes.
A growing number of Germans are falling under the spell of caravanning – a trend reflected by the fact that sales of new caravans and motor caravans have been rising for a number of years now. A new study issued by GfK, the largest German market research organization, reveals how great the growth potential is likely to be for leisure-vehicle holidaying in the coming years. According to GfK, some 14.2 million Germans over the age of 18 can imagine going on holiday in a leisure vehicle at some point in the next five years – a figure that represents nearly 25 percent of German adults. What’s more, the study also found that in the coming year alone, 5.3 million Germans are considering going on holiday in a caravan or motor caravan.
Millennials are particularly attracted to leisure-vehicle holidaying
According to the GfK study, millennials are particularly interested in setting out, during their holiday, in a caravan or motor caravan. Thus according to the study, 23 percent of Germans who are considering the possibility of undertaking a leisure-vehicle holiday at some point in the next five years are between the ages of 25 and 34 – and the vast majority of these individuals are under the age of 45. “The old chestnut to the effect that caravans and motor caravans are only for the elderly or for retirees has long since been overtaken by events. As even a cursory glance at any well trafficked social media platform will tell you, the younger generation finds the prospect of going on holiday in a leisure vehicle downright exciting,” says Daniel Onggowinarso, Managing Director of the industry association CIVD.
Majority of Germans interested in leisure-vehicle holidaying are relatively well off
Another interesting finding of the GfK study is the correlation between income level and interest in leisure-vehicle holidaying. According to the study, 38 percent of individuals who are considering the possibility of embarking on a caravanning holiday have a net monthly household income amounting to more than three thousand euros. The study also found that 25 percent of households who find the prospect of leisure-vehicle holidaying appealing have a monthly income ranging from two to three thousand euros. According to a recent study by the German think tank Deutsches Wirtschaftswissenschaftliches Institut für Fremdenverkehr (dwif), leisure-vehicle holidayers have above-average purchasing power, which they very much enjoy making use of. Likewise noteworthy is the fact that in 2018 alone, the consumption engaged in by individuals who opted for this form of holidaying generated fourteen billion euros in revenue for the German economy during the time spent on the open road. As for the GfK study, it revealed some interesting gender differences with 55 percent of the respondents who expressed an interest in leisure-vehicle holidaying being female.
Appeal of caravanning lies in independence, flexibility and closeness to nature
When caravanning fans were asked to explain this inclination, the responses were resoundingly clear. Some 72 percent indicated that leisure-vehicle holidaying meets their need to carve out their own itinerary and be independent. 71 percent of the respondents said that they wished to be close to nature, and 70 percent opined that caravanning would enable them to be flexible and spontaneous while on holiday.
Substantial market potential for the leisure-vehicle purchasing and rental sectors
More than two-thirds of the GfK study respondents who find the prospect of leisure-vehicle holidaying appealing own neither a caravan nor a motor caravan. However, nearly half of these respondents (42 percent) are considering the possibility of purchasing a leisure vehicle at some point in the future. 34 percent of these respondents are between the ages of 23 and 37, making them the largest group that may be purchasing a leisure vehicle in the future. Moreover, according to the GfK study, some 4.7 million Germans are considering the possibility of renting a caravan or motor caravan at some point in the next three years. In this regard as well, millennials were the largest group, accounting for 38 percent of the respondents who were inclined this way. “The market potential demonstrated by our study, in terms of both leisure vehicle sales and rentals, offers a great chance for the caravanning industry to grow further in the coming years,” noted GfK consumer-trend expert Dr. Isis Mennig.
Germany, France and The Netherlands: most popular caravanning destinations
The GfK study also determined the most popular caravanning destinations in Europe. Leading the pack is Germany, with 85 percent of the study respondents indicating that they would prefer to remain within the confines of their homeland during their caravanning holiday. 58 percent of the caravanning fans expressed a preference for France as a destination, while 58, 57 and 56 percent indicated that during their leisure-vehicle holiday, they would like to head, respectively, for The Netherlands, Denmark and Italy. “One of the hallmarks of caravanning is that it enables those who engage in it to carve out their own personal itinerary and be flexible when it comes to deciding on their destination or destinations,” Mr. Onggowinarso noted.