Summary of our market study

As of 2020 and beyond, the global language travel market, previously valued at USD 9 billion in 2019, exhibits a fragmented landscape due to the diverse options available to consumers. Though a total of 280,000 teenagers embarked on language trips in 2019, the trend for 2020 onward remains to be seen. Preferred destinations for Italian youth have traditionally been English-speaking countries like England, Northern Ireland, and Malta, with interest also growing for French and Spanish, and long-haul destinations such as the United States and Australia being popular as well.

Exploring Language Travel Trends: Italy's Shift Towards Asian Destinations

Key market players in Italy include private agencies like EF, founded in 1965, and the non-profit organization "L'Associazione Intercultura," established in 1955. Notably, there's an emerging trend of diversifying into Asian destinations, with countries like India, Indonesia, Japan, and China gaining traction as language travel options..Language Travel Market Trends in Italy: A Snapshot The Italian market has demonstrated a steady interest in language trips, with a particular inclination towards English-speaking countries. In recent years, there has been a significant upswing in the number of teenagers embarking on these educational journeys. Specifically, the figure stood between 250,000 and 300,000 young individuals choosing to enhance their language skills through travel. England, Northern Ireland, and Malta have emerged as the top destinations for these language learners, indicating a strong preference for English language immersion. Despite the traditional dominance of English, we are observing a growing fascination with other languages, too.

French and Spanish-speaking destinations are seeing a rise in popularity, reflecting a broader linguistic interest among Italian students. Even further afield, English-speaking countries like the United States and Australia remain sought-after choices for those who wish to venture outside of Europe. The market itself is vibrant and diverse, with various organizations catering to these travel experiences. Ranging from private agencies to associations and public entities, the market is notably fragmented. Esteemed operators like "EF" and "L'Associazione Intercultura" stand out due to their long-standing presence and widespread recognition within Italy. Moreover, an emerging trend reflects a pivot towards Asian countries. Agencies are investing in and expanding their offerings to include destinations such as India, Indonesia, Japan, and China. This shows an increasing appetite for linguistic and cultural diversity, beyond the traditionally favored European and Anglophone countries. Expressed in financial terms, as of 2019, the global language travel market had an estimated value between USD 8 and 10 billion, pointing towards the substantial economic significance of this sector. With Italy's contribution to this market and the wide array of choices available to consumers, it's clear that language travel will continue to be a dynamic and evolving field within the country's educational and cultural landscape.

Key Players in the Language Travel Market

  • EF and Intercultura : The language travel market, a dynamic and culturally enriching sector, is characterized by the presence of several prominent and influential organizations. Catering to the growing desire of individuals, particularly teenagers, to enhance their foreign language skills through immersive experiences, two main players stand out in the Italian market: EF Education First and the Intercultura Association.
  • EF Education First: Pioneers in Global Language Education Founded in 1965, EF Education First has established itself as a leading international education company specializing in language training, educational travel, academic degrees, and cultural exchange programs. With a robust network encompassing several countries, EF offers a broad range of language learning opportunities, tailored to meet the diverse needs of its clientele. EF's innovative approach to language travel involves not just classroom learning but a holistic educational experience that combines practical language usage with cultural activities and excursions. This methodology ensures that learners can practice their language skills in real-world settings, allowing for an enriched learning journey.
  • L'Associazione Intercultura: Fostering Cultural Exchange and Understanding On the non-profit front, L'Associazione Intercultura, founded in 1955, is a highly regarded organization with a wealth of experience in student exchange programs. Present in 159 Italian cities, Intercultura has developed a reputation for its commitment to promoting intercultural dialogue and understanding through its language travel opportunities. It provides students with the chance to learn languages by immersing them in different cultural settings, predominantly through host family arrangements. This personal touch not only helps learners to rapidly develop their language capabilities but also to build long-lasting relationships and global awareness.

Both EF Education First and L'Associazione Intercultura have contributed significantly to the shaping of the Italian language travel market. Their distinct approaches to language education—EF with its extensive commercial presence and broad array of courses, and Intercultura with its emphasis on cultural immersion and personal growth—illustrate the multifaceted nature of this industry. As the sector continues to evolve, the adaptability and innovative spirit of these organizations will play a crucial role in meeting the ever-changing demands of language learners.

Get all the information you need
to understand this market

Detailed content of our market study


  • Number of pages : ~ 40 pages
  • Format : Digital and PDF versions
  • Last update : 09/08/2021
Update Details

Summary and extracts

1 Market Summary

1.1 Definition and presentation

Language trips are experiences that people, especially teenagers, have ina foreign country withthe purpose of making improvementsor deepen their knowledge of a foreign language,through the tool of cultural immersion. The latter, in fact, along with dedicated language lessons, is able to stimulate greater learning ability. This is an experience that is known to take place during the summer months. During the experience, people can choose from different forms of accommodation, the most popular of which turn out to be staying with a host family and student residences.

In 2019, the global language travel market was worth $8.8 billion and is, to this day, a highly fragmented market given the high variety of choices offered to consumers.

In 2019, respecting the growth trend recorded in previous years as well, a total of 110,000 Italian teenagers undertook a language trip, the vast majority of whom chose an English-speaking country as their destination: in fact, it turns out that England, Northern Ireland and Malta are the favorite destinations for young Italians, with growing interest in French and Spanish cities as well. As for overseas destinations, on the other hand, the most successful countries are the United States or Australia.

The major operators active in the Italian market are dedicated private agencies, associations or public organizations. Among those with the highest level of recognition are "EF," a company founded in 1965 and operating internationally, and L'Associazione Intercultura, an ONLUS founded in 1955 and present in 159 Italian cities.

An emerging trend within the language travel market is certainly that relating to the increase in the variety of choice of destinations that can be reached. Indeed, many agencies and organizations have recently decided to invest significantly in Asian destinations. Among all those that have attracted the most attention from operators are India, Indonesia, Japan and China.

All our studies are available online in PDF format

Take a look at an example of our research on another market!

Do you have a question about this study?   +44 238 097 0676

Companies quoted in this study

This study contains a complete overview of the companies in the market, with the latest figures and news for each company. :

Inter-studioviaggi S.P.A
WEP Italia
EF Italia

Choosing this study means :

Access to more than 35 hours of work

Our studies are the result of over 35 hours of research and analysis. Using our studies allows you to devote more time and added value to your projects.

Benefit from 6 years' experience and over 1,500 industry reports already produced

Our expertise enables us to produce comprehensive studies in all sectors, including niche and emerging markets.

Our know-how and methodology enable us to produce reports that offer unique value for money.

Access to several thousand articles and paid-for data

Businesscoot has access to all the paid economic press as well as exclusive databases to carry out its market research (over 30,000 articles and private sources).

To enhance our research, our analysts also use web indicators (semrush, trends, etc.) to identify market trends and company strategies. (Consult our paying sources)

Guaranteed support after your purchase

A team dedicated to after-sales service, to guarantee you a high level of satisfaction. +44 238 097 0676

A digital format designed for our users

Not only do you have access to a PDF, but also to a digital version designed for our customers. This version gives you access to sources, data in Excel format and graphics. The content of the study can therefore be easily retrieved and adapted for your specific needs.

Our offers :

the language stay market | Italy

89 €
  • What are the figures on the size and growth of the market?
  • What is driving the growth of the market and its evolution?
  • What is the positioning of companies in the value chain?
  • Data from several dozen databases

5 reports pack (-15%) IT Italy

75.6 € / study
378 € instead of 445 € -15%
  • 5 reports at €75.6 excluding VAT per study to choose from our Italian catalogue for 12 months
  • Save 15% on additional studies purchased
  • Choose to be refunded any unused credit at the end of the 12-month period (duration of the pack)

See the terms and conditions of the pack and the refund of unused credit.


Our customer references

They have consulted our studies Discover the opinions (+500)

Malcolm Vincent
Linkedin logo

Malcolm Vincent

Astoria Finance

Gregoire de Castelnau
Linkedin logo

Gregoire de Castelnau

Stags Participations

Timothé Huignard
Linkedin logo

Timothé Huignard


Paul-Alexis Kebabtchieff
Linkedin logo

Paul-Alexis Kebabtchieff


Aymeric Granet
Linkedin logo

Aymeric Granet

Publicis Consultant

interviews & case studies All interviews and case studies (45)

La pépite Interview

BFM Business

Paul-Alexis Kebabtchieff

Boston Consulting Group

Marie Guibart

Kea Partners

Elaine, Durand

Crédit Agricole, Information & Veille

Philippe Dilasser

Initiative & Finance

Anne Baudry


Amaury Wernert

Kroll (Duff & Phelps)

Smart Leaders Interview


Do you have a question ?
Our team is at your disposal at   +44 238 097 0676