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Our flyers have spoken - here are the 10 most popular travel destinations

On 6-9 December, SAS conducted a vote asking travelers to vote for their dream destinations. Let's present the most popular destinations for 2019.

With SAS’ Now or Never campaign, which takes place from 6pm to midnight each Thursday, you can book flights to selected destinations at a reduced price. Via a voting system, we asked flyers to decide which 10 out of 121 destinations should have reduced ticket prices. 

"We wanted to give our customers a chance to influence which destinations we would include in the Now or Never campaign. The voting also gave us an insight into where our travelers really want to go, which is of course a priority for us in SAS," says Annie Gustavsson, Jr. Marketing Project Manager at SAS.

The 10 most popular: 

A total of 13,523 flyers voted. The highest number of voters were from Norway (6,892), followed by Sweden (4,047) and Denmark (2,059). We also received 525 votes from other countries. The combined results show that large Asian and American cities have the most travel appeal. Japan’s capital Tokyo got most votes (10.38%) followed by New York (9.19%), Miami (5.27%) and Los Angeles (5.17%). In 5th place was Hong Kong (4.5%), followed by San Francisco (4.1%), and the European sun destinations Alicante in Spain (3.28%) and Alanya in Turkey (3.28%). London (2.29%) and Athens (2.23%). were naturally also in the top 10.

"Tokyo continues to be one of our most popular destinations, and skiing in Japan is becoming increasingly popular. The United States and Asia are self-written winners, especially now in the winter. How many us us does not dream of going there? Alanya and Athens have increased significantly in popularity compared to last year and we have opened several new lines to Alanya from Norway with more departures," says Annie Gustavsson.

How the different countries voted

Tokyo was most popular with international voters, with 27.24% of the votes. Among Scandinavians, Danes were most keen on Tokyo with 12.04% voting for the Japanese capital, with 11.34% of Swedes and 8.91% of Norwegians also agreed. 

Swedes were almost equally keen on second place New York, with 11.32% voting for the Big Apple, as did 11.07% of Danes and 7.62% of Norwegians. More Swedes wanted to fly to fourth place Los Angeles (6.89%) than their Nordic neighbors from Norway (4.24%) and Denmark (4.66%), while more Danes (6.95%) dream of San Francisco than Swedes (3.83%) and Norwegians (3.35%). When it comes to the other destinations in the top 10, the spread of votes was otherwise similar.

Here are the top destinations:

Tokyo

Experience the Japanese capital and its fascinating mix of skyscrapers, neon signs and hi-tech feel, temples, parks and traditions. Enjoy an authentic food experience at a local izakaya or a 3-star Michelin restaurant, shop electronics, and meet Japanese pop culture in Akihabara. Watch sumo wrestling, and relax in Shinjuku Gyoen Park during the cherry blossom time in spring.

Photo: Shutterstock

New York

The city that never sleeps, the city with iconic sights such as the Statue of Liberty, Times Square, Central Park and the Empire State Building. Food from every corner of the globe, world class shopping and museums. Why not cycle along the Hudson River, check out the ultra-hip DUMBO (Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass) District by Brooklyn Bridge, and sample the trendy restaurants in Brooklyn’s Bushwick.

Miami

The pastel-coloured Art Deco District, yoga on the beach, and everything from Cuban to Puritan food. Take a tour through Little Havana, the Design District and Ocean Drive, where you can feel the city's pulse and Latino rhythms from your car. Visit the hip and happening district of Wynwood, take an alligator safari in the Everglades, and don't miss the beautiful beaches in Florida Keys.

Photo: Shutterstock

Los Angeles

Movie stars, fitness and general fabulousness. Los Angeles sets the trend, and the world follows. Hang out in a rooftop bar, eat healthy food like the stars at Erewhon, and shop till you drop on Rodeo Drive. Experience the spectacular views and art at the Getty Center, take a walking tour to the Hollywood sign in the Hollywood Hills, and relax on the beach in Santa Monica or Malibu.

Hong Kong

With a population of over 7 million, Hong Kong is one of the most densely populated cities on Earth and an international meeting place for business and pleasure. Sample the fantastic Hong Kong food culture in the trendy restaurant district, Sham Shui Po, take a walk to one of the many beautiful beaches, and experience the incredible skyline from a rooftop bar with a view - a sight that’s hard to beat.

San Francisco

San Francisco’s special style is a legacy of the hippie movement and hi-tech, Victorian town houses, skyscrapers and the famous cable cars. Eat, drink and party in the hip gay Castro District, check out the Richmond District with its modern Chinatown, discover the city's hippest cafés and restaurants in Mission. Explore the beaches in the Bay Area and spare a few hours to walk across the Golden Gate Bridge.

Alicante

Spanish Alicante on the Mediterranean coast is blessed with an average of 3,000 hours of sunshine a year and plenty of charm, cultural experiences, and good food. Relax on Postiguet beach by the old town, enjoy the view from the largest castle ruins in Spain and eat fantastic food at La Ereta in Ereta Park. Alicante is also a perfect starting point for road trips along the coast to Barcelona, Malaga, and unspoilt beaches and villages along the coast.

Alanya

In Alanya on the Turkish riviera, you’ll find sun, sea, and a thousand-year culture. Sample the special atmosphere in the city's medieval castle at nightfall, enjoy a body scrub in a Turkish baths and suck on a waterpipe by the harbor, where you can also check out the night life. If you want to find a pretty beach, do as the locals do: pack a picnic and head to Ulas beach outside the city.

London

“When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life,” as the famous quote goes. The British capital has been the birthplace of everything from global imperialism to punk. Historic sights such as Tower Bridge, Big Ben and St. Paul’s Cathedral attract millions of tourists every year. London also means afternoon tea, fashion, theatre, and some of the world’s best shopping. Plus, cozy evenings are spent in a local pub over a pint and some pub grub.

Athen

The Greek capital has plenty to offer visitors. Although Athens has now grown to be a modern world city, it is a little town at heart where ancient monuments meet the 21st Century and attracts culture-loving tourists from all around the world. The numerous bars and restaurants here very rarely disappoint.

Last edited: December 13, 2018

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