“Destination dupes”: the travel and stay trend for students

Article proposed by our partner Travel languagelanguage specialist stays to learn a foreign language.

Historically, the term “dupes” referred to cheaper versions of clothing, accessories, perfumes and cosmetics, promoted through social networks such as TikTok, Instagram or Snapchat. This trend has recently extended to tourism, where we have seen an increase in the popularity of alternative destinations. These places, cheaper and less crowded than the emblematic destinations, are, however, copies of the latter and offer an authentic and economical experience. For example, many travelers decide to go to Pharos instead of Santorini in Greece, to Perth instead of Sydney in Australia, or to the Istria region instead of Dalmatia in Croatia (Expedia Studies – Unzip 24).

The language remains and the ‘Dupes’ trend

This is nothing new in the field of language stays. Without explicitly using the term “naive”, students with smaller budgets have long opted for less expensive cities to improve their language skills. For example, Bristol, Manchester or Liverpool instead of London in the United Kingdom, Santa Barbara instead of Los Angeles in the United States, or Toronto as an alternative to New York. These choices reflect a search for authenticity and deep cultural immersion. A decision that proves to be profitable, since the much smaller percentage of French students in these destinations leads them to practice English more and leave a certain comfort zone.

Top 7 destinations for language staycations

  • Liverpool instead of London (ENGLAND)
  • Santa Barbara instead of Los Angeles (USA)
  • Toronto instead of New York (USA/CANADA)
  • Gold Coast instead of Sydney. (AUSTRALIA)
  • Valencia instead of Barcelona. (SPAIN)
  • Torbay instead of Brighton (ENGLAND)
  • Galway instead of Dublin (IRELAND)

A determining factor explains this choice according to Matthieu Gaullier, Marketing Director at Travel language : “The significant increase in housing prices in metropolises such as London, Dublin, Los Angeles and New York has had an impact on students’ choice of destination for a language stay. By selecting less expensive cities and saving on accommodation, students can make the most of their stay, allowing themselves more activities, tours, leisure activities and, above all, they can spend more time immersing themselves.”

With their growing popularity, let’s hope these destinations remain accessible for as long as possible!

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