Online travel in Southeast Asia primed for long-term growth

China dominates the APAC growth story, but new research from Google and Temasek shows that online travel in Southeast Asia could grow by 15% ever year for the next decade and be worth $90 billion by 2025.

For the research, Southeast Asia comprises Indonesia, Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam, Thailand and the Philippines, while online travel is made up of flights, hotels and rides.

In 2015 these three segments combined were worth $21.6 billion – flights accounting for $12.5 billion, hotels $6.6 billion; rides $2.5 billion. By 2025 they will be worth $40.5 billion, $36.4 billion and $13.1 billion respectively.

Rides –  which in turn covers taxi, rail and buses –  is growing its value slower than its volumes because increased competition will keep fares down.  A lot of the growth will come from the markets other than Singapore where fares are up to one-third the cost, again skewing the figures.

Hotels and air will account for 85% of the online market by 2025.

In terms of the individual countries, Indonesia’s hotel and air market was the biggest in the region in 2015 at $5 billion. It will grow at 18% every year until 2025 when it will be worth $24.5 billion, consolidating its dominance.

Thailand will overtake Singapore to become the second largest Southeast Asian market, seeing the highest compound annual growth rate of 18% to reach a value of $20 billion.

The study provides an overview of e-commerce across the region as a context for the growth in online travel. Some 3.8 new internet users will come online every month until 2020 and Indonesia is the world’s fastest growing internet market.

A growing GDP across the region – 5.3% a year for the next ten years – and a relatively young population are seen as contributory factors towards the overall e-commerce market getting to $200 billion by 2025.

Having  said that, there are a number of identified challenges, from internet speeds and access across the archipelagos and rural areas, to payment options in a region where many people are “unbanked” – between 60% and 70% of people in Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam do not have a bank account.

Click here to see the research on SlideShare.

Related reading from Tnooz:
Desktop still rules online travel in Singapore (May 2016)

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Martin Cowen

About the Writer :: Martin Cowen

Martin Cowen is contributing editor for tnooz and is based in the UK. Besides reporting and editing, he also oversees our sponsored content initiative and works directly with clients to produce articles and reports. For the past several years he has worked as a freelance writer, specialising in B2B distribution and technology. Before freelancing, from 2000-2008, he was launch editor for, the first online-only B2B daily news service for the UK travel sector.



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