Impact of Singapore Young traveler trend to Indonesia Tourism

Young travelers is one of the fastest growing and most dynamic market of the global tourism sector. The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) estimates that approximately 20 per cent of all international tourist arrivals in 2010 were young people. In that particular year, young travelers generate 165 billion USD towards global tourism receipts, affirming their financial value to the global tourism industry and local economies (United Nations World Tourism Organization, 2011).

Taiyab (2005) defined the ‘young’ tourism market as travelers between 16 to 25 years old, who take a travel involving at least one night’s stay. Young travelers have a higher lifetime value compare to other travel segment such as senior travelers. According to the UNWTO, based on youth and student travel market survey 2011, young travelers often spend more than other tourists and are likely to return and give more value to the destination over their lifetime.

Furthermore, as the chances of getting higher education and exposure to the world, young travelers have penetrated and played an important role in the tourism market.

Young travelers, though restricted by relatively low levels of disposable income, they commonly have high interests and leisure time in exploring new destinations. A convenient and inexpensive short-haul destination attracts younger and less affluent travelers (Jang, Bai, Hong, & O’Leary, 2004). In addition, young travelers have high expectation regarding the importance of value for money though they have their financial resources available for travelling (Glover, 2010).

Young people in Singapore today has a different lifestyle in managing finances than their elders in the era of the 80s to 90s.

Singapore residents aged 18-21 years who recently graduated from high school, and began to work with a minimum income of $ 2,500 per month, currently has a lifestyle to travel abroad for vacation. This situation does not differ much to the age group of 21-64 years, recorded 2.5 million people. This age group that dominates on the total Singaporean who numbered 5.4 million inhabitants

Singaporeans work from Monday to Friday, when the holiday comes, they definitely want to get out to relieve tired. They do not want to stay in Singapore because they feel Singapore is cramped and overcrowded city. Interestingly this has been done by the youngster, they don’t wait till mature aged, they willing to travel around the world.

This Singaporean Lifestyle Changes proved give a positive impact for neighbor countries, such as Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Philippines, and Vietnam to the tourism sector.

Young travelers (picture courtesy of google)
Young travelers (picture courtesy of google)


In 2014, Indonesia became the second destination country for Singaporeans to travel with the amount of 1.5 million people, while Malaysia is the first with 13.9 million people, then Thailand with 864 thousand people.

Based on these data, cities in Indonesia should prioritized Singaporean as their tourism market, especially in the last three years, registering a growth of up to 15.34 percent.

So it’s a pity if the nearby towns like the one in Sumatra did not take this opportunity, because so far the most profit taken by Malaysia which is very intense in the promotion.

Indonesia, which has a variety of potential tourist destination, in terms of landscape to cultural and geographic should be the main tourist destination for Singaporean .

However, the reality is different, until now the highest Singaporean visit only concentrated in three cities, namely Jakarta, Bali and Batam. Meanwhile, Bandung, Yogyakarta, and Surabaya were the second, while Palembang, Medan, Aceh, became the third city because it benefited from close geographical location.

Especially for the third city, Singapore tourists is still relatively low with less than one thousand per year. The potential to increase revenue from Singapore tourist is very big, considering the lifestyle of traveling every weekend is certainly targeting the nearby city and countries. In addition, they are also known as extravagant shopper as Asia typical tourists.

Singaporean tourist will not travel far on weekends, they will travel to the nearby places, because it took only about two days, different when annual leave ranging from 14 days, because generally they will go on vacation to Europe.

Flight schedule become the main requirements to attract Singapore tourist. This is not an issue anymore, for every two hours there is a flight from Jakarta to Singapore, even for certain cities such as Palembang, Batam and Medan, has had a direct flight every day.

Although not faced with the issue of transportation, but for the nearby city need to prepare a special strategy to compete with Malaysia and Thailand.

These strategies must be adapted to the lifestyle of Singaporeans who like practicality, timeliness, and use of technology, focus on providing a sense of security because the crime rate in Singapore is very low, infrastructure and standards for Singaporean such as internet, and the interesting travel packages (variety of travel experience).

Then, if want to focus on targeting the Singapore young traveler need to provide landscapes travel packages, such as river rafting, water attractions, and more.

Wendy P Tarigan