September 5, 2023
According to a report by the New York Times (Nov. 17th Taiwan time), the tourism industry in New York city has been severely hit by the COVID-19 epidemic, and it is estimated that it will not be able to fully recover until 2025. Among them, the economy of the local community, deeply connected with the tourism industry, will suffer the most. Compared to this, how would consumers see the development of the epidemic? Does the change in Taiwan's domestic tourism policy affect the people? As for the physical art and culture events that have been directly cancelled before, do Taiwanese audiences already want to experience those?
If we are going to leave a footnote for 2020, the COVID-19 epidemic will undoubtedly be the most important keyword. Although vaccine research and development seem to be progressing, with the recent outbreak of severe cluster infections in neighboring areas such as Sapporo, Japan, the possibility of counterattack or increase in epidemics around the world remains high. The latest survey in November shows that Taiwanese consumers are pessimistic about the global epidemic, and most believe that it is impossible to resume traveling abroad in the near future. At least they’ll have to wait until the second half of next year.
Therefore, domestic tourism has become the new normal for Taiwanese consumers. The public has maintained a certain level of attitudes towards using public transportation, and even slightly improved their confidence in taking high-speed rail, trains and planes. In addition, although policy subsidies for domestic tourism accommodation and others have ended in October, most consumers believe that their domestic travel plans will not be affected by that. There are still 70% of the people with travel plans in the next three months.
We can speculate that although travel subsidies have encouraged people to travel, those are not the main reason for either discouraging people from sightseeing or encouraging people to travel. Expectation for travel experience or mastering the fundamentals of marketing appeals is the main reason for attracting consumers. Only by expanding in-depth attractions or launching new services would it be possible to accurately grasp the customer group.
As for the selection of tourist attractions, it is not surprising that outdoor attractions have grown popular slightly; in addition, it is noteworthy that the young groups (18-39 years old) and the elite group of opinions pay more visits to indoor attractions. As the epidemic in Taiwan has stabilized compared to other countries, people have become more and more accustomed to coexisting with the current anti-epidemic situation. It is expected that indoor arts, cultural and entertainment activities will gradually resume, and the public will also be back participating as usual.
It is worth noting that, as the most developed performing arts unit in Taiwan, National Theater and Concert Hall has been actively attracting the youth customers and even those under the age of 21 in recent years. National Theater and Concert Hall has mentioned that the consumption capacity of young people in Taiwan has continued to grow and should not be underestimated. Taking 2017 as an example, the consumption of people under the age of 25 accounted for one-third of the box office of their hosted programs, and the amount of single consumption was around 770 TWD.
Therefore, we can find that young people are not only the first to return to the auditorium under the epidemic situation, but also the one with the habit of paying for admission to watch performances, compared with other age groups.
With the completion of large-scale performance venues in cities outside of Taipei, if we can design and develop other tourist itineraries or attractions for performances or exhibition tours according to the preferences and needs of young people, it will be a potential market worthy of devoting.
In addition, there are more breakthroughs in the development of art and cultural experience activities. In April this year, Taiwan PTS launched many authorized content for members to watch on the original PTS+ platform in order to support art groups that cannot hold physical performances. It is regarded that, for those streaming video-on-demand platforms such as Netflix, there are still needs from different groups of customers and space to develop in Taiwan.
The second trend is to launch various ticket sales programs that combine offline and online, like the 2020 Taipei Art Festival. The other trend requires more advanced technology in audio-visual platforms. For example, in response to the epidemic, Japan has developed a dual ticketing model for concerts, which is to limit the number of attendees at physical concerts, with a link that people can access to live performance recordings within a period of time.
Under the situation of the epidemic, although the tourism industry in Taiwan did not suffer a horrifying destruction like in other countries, it is still facing many harsh transformation trials. Taiwanese audiences can’t wait to travel or enter the venue to watch performances. However, where will the tickets lead us? To Which destinations will consumers be attracted?