Travelers Choose More Upscale Stays to Ring in the New Year

After almost a year of restricted travel, travelers are indulging in more high-end stays this New Year’s Eve. According to booking data from digital travel platform Agoda, 4 to 5-star hotels are the accommodation of choice to ring in 2021 globally, pushing 1 to 3.5-star hotels down to second place this year, as compared to New Year’s Eve 2019.

With the exception of Taiwan, Thailand and the United States (US) which favored 1 to 3.5-star hotels as their preference, travelers from the other markets are aligned with the global trend. Korean and Singaporean travelers have maintained their desire for 4 to 5-star hotels as the top choice this New Year’s Eve.

This year, travelers are also looking to get away from it all to explore more diverse destinations than in 2019. Beach destinations and coastal cities like Miami Beach (US), Langkawi (Malaysia), Quy Nhon (Vietnam), Yeosu-si (Korea), as well as places known for their natural beauty such as Cameron Highlands (Malaysia), Hua Lien (Taiwan), Laguna (Philippines) and Sapa (Vietnam) climbed the ranks to top 10 domestic destinations in respective markets for staycations this New Year’s Eve.

New Year’s Eve in Malaysia

  • Compared to 2019, Malaysian travelers are booking 4 to 5-star hotels as their preference this year, nudging 1 to 3.5-stars hotels to second spot.
  • The 99 islands of Langkawi and Cameron Highlands, famous for its relaxing atmosphere, tea plantations and strawberry farms beat Ipoh and Johor Bahru into this year’s top ten domestic destinations

Top 10 Domestic Destinations

  New Year’s Eve 2019 New Year’s Eve 2020
1 Kuala Lumpur Kuala Lumpur
2 Penang Langkawi
3 Malacca Penang
4 Johor Bahru Kuching
5 Kuching Malacca
6 Kota Kinabalu Kota Kinabalu
7 Port Dickson Kuantan
8 Genting Highland Cameron Highlands
9 Ipoh Port Dickson
10 Kuantan Genting Highland


Agoda booking data was collated on 10 December 2020 for New Year’s Eve bookings in 2019, 2020. 4 to 5-star hotel bookings saw an increase of 13% as compared to 2019.

Read also: How to Protect Yourself from the Coronavirus While Traveling