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24 July 2023

“Always on”: 82 percent of Germans also surf on vacation

Frankfurt am Main, 24 July 2023: For most people, using the Internet is also part of their vacation – 82 percent of Germans are also online at their travel destination, according to a recent representative survey* by DE-CIX. Only ten percent of all respondents state that they do not use the Internet at all on vacation, and among Zoomers (Generation Z, 18 - 28 years) this figure drops to a mere four percent.

Baby Boomers emailing, Zoomers netflixing

What is surprising is that Baby Boomers (58 - 76 years old) in particular are also busy sending emails while on vacation. A full 39 percent of this age group also use email when they are away from home and work. Across all age groups, email still comes in at 28 percent, although it no longer plays a major role for Gen Z, at 11 percent.

What email is to Baby Boomers, video streaming is to Zoomers. At 23 percent, almost a quarter of this age group do not want to miss their favorite series on Netflix and the like, even when they are on vacation.

Chat, navigation, and weather apps most popular apps on vacation

In addition, applications that offer added value on vacation are particularly popular. For example, 45 percent of respondents use messengers like WhatsApp, etc.. Usage is much more pronounced among women (51 percent) than among men (39 percent). Navigation apps are also widespread, used by 38 percent of respondents. Weather apps form part of the vacation experience for around a third (36 percent). The latter are particularly popular among the Baby Boomers, where nearly half (46 percent) of respondents use them.

Accordingly, good connectivity at the travel destination is important to the respondents: Almost two-thirds (63 percent) of all survey participants expect free Wi-Fi in their home away from home. A generally stable Internet connection is important for 50 percent of respondents at their travel destination.

“The days when vacation means being offline are long gone. Smartphones and tablets have become constant travel companions and even when we’re taking time off at a holiday spot, most of us are ‘always on’. Today, reliable Wi-Fi in holiday accommodation is part of the minimum standards for tourists and is expected everywhere, despite increasingly good mobile tariffs,” says Ivo Ivanov, CEO at DE-CIX. “With the younger generations, we see that there is hardly any difference between their online behavior on vacation and in everyday life. They also like to use data-intensive applications like video streaming while on vacation. The older generation may use different services, such as weather or email applications, but their expectations of a stable Internet and good network coverage at their holiday destination are also high.”

*Methodology: On behalf of DE-CIX, YouGov surveyed a total of 2,009 people aged 18 and over between July 7 and 10, 2023, representative of the Federal Republic of Germany. The results were weighted. Note on Internet usage: The evaluation explicitly refers to private, not professional Internet use.