Uncovering International Search Trends

Published March 4, 2016

With our unique repository of 750,000 travel routes from over 4,800 operators in 144 countries, Rome2rio attracts over 7 million visitors each month. While the searches conducted by these visitors are varied; from short distance intra-city searches to multihop long haul trips, we have uncovered some commonalities about when and how visitors around the world are using the site.

For comparison, we’ve pulled out daily and weekly traffic trends across four countries; Japan, Britain, Israel and India.

Japan stays true to its reputation as a nation of early risers; the country is on average the first to start searching Rome2rio for travel information each morning. Britain is next to tap into travel routing, with Israel and India starting on average almost 30 minutes later. Japan and Britain both make the most of the weekend and start earliest on Saturday, in contrast to Israel where the Saturday start is around 30 minutes later than usual. We think that these average times relate to when people are in transit and using their mobile to navigate intra-city travel.

Some interesting things are seen when we look at weekly travel data. It seems that the realities of Monday mornings hit our users hard! Japanese, British and Indian usage all peak on this day. Perhaps the reason that Saturday is the least popular day for searching our site for those in Britain and Japan is because our fans are out enjoying their itineraries? Travel planning dips dramatically on Fridays and Saturdays in Israel, in keeping with the religious rhythms of the country. India too has a significant dip; it is on Sunday, in keeping with the traditional cycle of activity and rest in the country.

Not only can we see when our users are on the site but we can also see how they are accessing our repository of routes. Even though mobile usage is growing at a faster rate than desktop use globally, we are still seeing a significant difference between mobile and desktop use during traditional office hours – suggesting to us that a bit of holiday planning during lunch is still very much a thing. Just be careful of those crumbs in the keyboard! On the weekends, mobile usage increases, coming close to the desktop usage line, suggesting that people are firing up Rome2rio while they are on the hop; perhaps enjoying a mini break in a new town or discovering somewhere new in their current one.

We found these user insights compelling, and it got our imaginations fired up; how are people planning their trips? Is it a family discussion with plenty of debate, taking place at the kitchen table? Is it during a snatched solo dreaming session on the daily commute to the office? Is it filled with the excitement of mapping out a long considered and carefully saved for trip-of-a-lifetime?

Whatever it may be, our salutation is the same; happy travels!

– Kirsteene, Marco and Andrew