Birthdays Top Occasion For Gift Experience Buyers

Birthday gift experience balloon ride for 21st celebration.
Two best friends celebrating a 21st birthday gift experience in the skies.

First published at:
Publish date: 24th August 2022
Update date: 25th August 2022

Birthdays are the top occasion online buyers purchase a hot air balloon ride gift experience for.

In a customer survey by a UK hot air balloon ride company, 82% of people looking for gift ideas online said they were looking to buy for a birthday.

The second most popular reason people look for balloon experience day gifts, at 7% of those surveyed, was ‘just because’ by those looking to treat themselves or someone else.

Third was for a wedding anniversary gift, at 6% and the fourth most popular occasion at just 2% was a gift idea for weddings.

Abi Sadler, partnerships manager WonderDays experiences, said the data broadly mirrored what her team had found across all types of gift experiences purchased in 2022.

“When taking a random cross section of 100 of our WonderDays customers, almost 75% bought birthday gift experience, with 5% actually purchasing as a ‘thank you’ gift,” she said.

“This was across all different types of gift experience, from junior supercar driving days to hot air balloon rides and overnight stays to forest Segway adventures.

“More online shoppers are choosing experience day gifts for birthdays over any other special occasion.

“By far one of the most popular experience days chosen is a hot air balloon ride, closely followed by driving gift experiences, Zip World activities and afternoon tea.”

Ms Sadler added that alternative gift experiences, such as immersive and virtual reality events, or traditional artisan crafts such as beekeeping and blacksmithing were also a popular choice as “something different”.

“Many customers are looking beyond the more traditional and choosing other, more unusual gift experiences such as sword making experiences or events that put them right in the heart of the action, as in an immersive Gunpowder Plot or secret agent Bond experience” she said.

“In our view, experience day gifts are absolutely her to stay as a top choice for birthdays.”


Data sources: Customer survey on reasons for buying a balloon ride by Virgin Balloon Flights, October 2020. Customer reasons for buying a gift experience from WonderDays, August 2022.

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