Travel fuels credit card spending

  • Malaysia
  • Monday, 14 Mar 2016

Marina Bay Sands, Singapore, stands tall in the night skyline. Singapore remains the destination of choice for Malaysians, according to data released by UOB Malaysia. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Malaysians sure love to travel and that wanderlust continues to grow, according to recent data from United Overseas Bank (Malaysia) Bhd (UOB). In 2015, over half a billion ringgit was spent on overseas travel. The data also showed that Malaysians preferred destinations within South-East Asia.

Gathered from the spending patterns of all UOB Malaysia personal credit card members, the data revealed that Malaysians spent over RM700mil on holidays in 2015. This is an increase of more than 9% over the same period in 2014 and also one of the highest percentage increases across all spending categories like insurance premiums, retail, petrol and groceries.

Topping the list of travel destinations was Singapore, followed by the United States, Britain, Australia and Thailand. This is the second year in a row that Singapore and Thailand have appeared as two of the top five most popular travel destinations.

UOB Malaysia’s personal financial services head Ronnie Lim said that Malaysia’s growing affluence and better connectivity across Southeast Asia are driving the penchant for travel among Malaysians.

“The growing affluence among the Malaysian middle class and increased connectivity through the rise in the number of regional low-cost airlines since the past few years have made travel popular among Malaysians. It is not surprising that Singapore remains a top destination for Malaysians given how accessible it is and how similar the two cultures are,” he said.

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