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Italian tourism during lockdown

Italians and Tourism during the Lockdown

Data Studio for a better Tourism research visualization

How many times did you want to consult a single book and find all the answers inside it? How many times did you feel the need to have all the information available within a single place, in a single container?

It all starts with an idea: having all the possible data, of various kinds, of different sources, within a single dashboard. A place where it is possible to see together bar, pie, donuts charts, intertwining lines, text, colors, but in the maximum order, linearity, and clarity possible. It is on this axiom that the Data Visualization tools development and operation are based.

These Artificial Intelligence tools meet the needs of marketers, analysts, strategists to be able to have a complete overview of holistic data, however within attractive graphics and quick readings.

In KPI6 we are always attracted to new challenges, we are hungry to experiment how all possible AI features can be used with the data of our platform and above all how they can match the needs of our clients.

It is precisely for this reason that we wanted to connect our platform and the unsolicited data obtained from it with a Data Visualization tool, Data Studio, in order to provide our partners with all the possible information on an interested search, with the best visual result, mixing solicited and unsolicited data.

Data Studio is a free tool from Google that lets users make custom reports with data from Google’s marketing services and external sources. The data widgets in Data Studio are notable for their variety, customization options, live data and interactive controls, including data sources, as Google products (Analytics, AdWords, Search Console, Sheets, YouTube, etc.), database connectors, file upload, and social media data.

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What did we want to analyze? Using the various charts and views available in the reporting tool, we have wanted to make an overview of a hot topic in this period: Tourism.

Summer is coming, but this summer will be different: a summer marked by the signs left by the Corona Virus emergency and by the various impositions and decrees, which will reshape our entire economy, but also our private life and free time.

We wanted to see how interest in this topic evolved during the first quarter of the year, analyzing various types of data: we have crossed the conversations about tourism on social media (with the inevitable trend of holidays renunciation and internal tourism) with the volumes of air traffic (source: Assaeroporti) and the search volumes of the main platforms connected to tourism (source: Google Trends).

A real holistic approach to the topic, which combines various data within the views of the AI Data Studio connector.

Search interest overtime about Travel and accommodation services

If there is one thing that faithfully reflects current affairs and what is happening in the world, those are surely the Google search results. Analyzing what people are looking for in this browser, it is possible to understand if any particular event is happening and the consequent reactions.

What is the first thing you do when you listen to or learn about something new? To Google it!

There have been many COVID19-based kinds of research in this pandemic. From the first information to fake news, to decrees. But Tourism is the one thing that has lost the appeal for Italians in this period. 

We have analyzed the searches of the Italians of the main holiday booking platforms (Trivago, Booking, Expedia, Skyscanner), by Google Trends, in the first quarter of the year.

In January Booking.com was the undisputed leader among its competitors, because the Italians, unaware of what was about to happen, were proceeding to book hotels, mountain weekends, or tourist trips.

The first drastic drop in searches was on February 21, the day of Codogno’s lockdown. Since that day, the searches of Italians for these sites have decreased more and more, settling on a low level since the beginning of March, coinciding with the general lockdown.

Plane movements and passengers

Lockdown has been not only synonymous with “no holidays”, but also synonymous with “less travel“. Interesting from this point of view is the analysis of Assereoporti‘s data on the volumes of air travel and passengers in the first quarter.

Parallel to the data seen before, in conjunction with the major directives and decrees, we have seen a drop in movements in the main Italian international airports (Malpensa, Bergamo, Bologna, and Fiumicino), impressive drops for all the companies, which have seen the number of their passengers slowly decreasing.

Holidays Renunciation and the hope for the Internal Tourism

What will the reaction of the social media audience be? What have the Italians said about this emergency situation and their holidays’ renunciation?

Analyzing the volumes of conversations on social networks, we can see that in January there is no mention of this topic, while the first signs appear in the first week of February, coinciding with the first news of the contagion in Italy. Some people were already starting to show their willingness not to go on vacation, while others were already considering this lockdown situation.

The first major spike occurs on February 23th, a few days after Codogno’s lockdown. There is still a certain skepticism and controversy among people regarding the structures that have closed beforehand or the events that have been canceled.

We can see a further spike in conversations on the 9th of March, the first official lockdown day for all Italy. After this decree, there has been greater awareness of the crisis situation.

In fact, on social networks, we can read about people who have voluntarily canceled their summer holidays (in Italy or abroad), others that have received e-mails from the airlines’ company, while a good part of them confirm that they have canceled not only trip but also birthday parties and other occasions.

Like all crisis situations, this carries conflicting opinions too. The reactions of the social media audience were varied: if someone had previously voluntarily canceled the holidays, others were not so happy to do it.

In fact, despite the volume of conversations falling over time, negative sentiment increases in the post lockdown phase. Touching very high peaks.

It is within these conversations with a generally negative sentiment, that we can catch a growing trend within the Italian social media conversations: favoring internal tourism.

The sayings are always right: people never appreciate what they have until it’s gone.  And it is precisely in this lockdown moment, of total closure, of inability to travel, that the Italians have started to dream and miss the Belpaese summer destinations: from art cities to beaches and islands.

A desire to rediscover the still unknown beauties of the country, but also to encourage and grow Italian tourism, which is experiencing a profound crisis due to the impositions of the CoronaVirus decree.

A constant volume of conversations during the lockdown period which, differently to what seen before, shows a very positive sentiment, a sign of the Italians’ desire and hope to return to visit their country from north to south.

Through a general overview of the data from various sources, we managed to have a complete vision of a topic such as tourism,  managing to extrapolate some details and growing trends.

All this analysis would have been less fluid without the opportunity to have all the data gathered in a single dashboard, thanks to linear and visually impacting charts that allowed us to have a sliding analysis of the contents. This one and many other analyzes can be carried out in the same way, with the addition of other data sources too. 

Data Studio is one more tool for us and our customers, in order to offer high-performance and complete reports for every business need.

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