From eco-conscious holidays to culinary travel – find out the 2019 tourism trends every jet setter should know about!
Ecotourism is a form of sustainable travel that supports the local environment instead of putting more pressure on it and exploiting its resources. In other words, it encourages the exploration and conservation of natural environments while keeping visitor impact low.
If you care about nature, the environment, and local communities, you should ensure that your travels are carried out sustainably.
Mass ecotourism is an oxymoron — ecotourism has to be done in small or medium groups. There is also usually a strong educational component associated with ecotourism, which also helps, but is not mandatory. Common themes in this context are recycling, responsible water consumption, local craftsmanship, and cycling or walking as opposed to driving. A great emphasis is placed on protecting local species, especially threatened species.
Marriott International, for example, plans to cut food waste by 50% by 2025, while boutique hotel the Salt of Palmar in Mauritius has launched a pesticide-free, hydroponic fruit, and vegetable farm to be more self-sufficient – showing that the trend towards ecotourism has gone global!
With an increased global interest in social issues such as human rights, equality, and working conditions, conscious travellers are on the rise in 2019. More questions are being asked around social, political and environmental issues prior to deciding on where to visit. Travellers are seeking authentic experiences while also ensuring safety, regardless of their gender, ethnicity or sexual orientation.
Conscious Travelling also continues once you arrive at your destination. The goal is to connect with a place, community/people and to make your travels be just as fulfilling for others. It can be considered a type of wellness travel that is mutually beneficial. Conscious travel is less an isolated incident relegated to your vacation and more of a mindset that extends well into your everyday life.
The continued growth and development of this sector of tourism is driven by a rising interest in adopting wellness as a lifestyle value. Wellness Travel allows travellers the ability to maintain, enhance or kick-start a healthy lifestyle, and support one’s sense of well being.
A Wellness Vacation can include spa treatments, healthy eating/culinary events, fitness activities and adventures such as walking tours, hiking, paddling and yoga, inspirational outings and adventures in nature that clear or expand the mind, and educational programs that share ways to incorporate healthy habits into our everyday lives.
The infusion of wellness and holistic health is already at play in all areas of travel such as in-flight meditation, wellness features in hotels such as organic/healthy menu options and wellness driven experiences.
Basically, everyone is now interested in food and drink when they’re travelling. For some travellers, the food and drink go beyond interest to a major factor that drives travel decisions. Not only is today’s foodie more likely to base their travel decisions on culinary options, but they’re looking for a different kind of culinary experience than in years past. People are now seeking a more immersive experience that allows them to get a sense of the local culture through its cuisine. Travellers no longer want to go to yet another chain restaurant, they want an authentic way to experience the local foods and local culture.
As culinary interest continues to grow, tour operators and travel agencies are adding even more options to their menus of possibilities, ranging from city tours and cooking classes in restaurants to a tour and private meal/wine tasting at a wine boutique. It’s become clear that one of the reasons travelers turn to travel professionals is for their role as advisor, someone who can separate the good from the bad, authentic from generic and offer up valuable expertise and recommendations.
Micro trips are well planned and executed short trips which maximize destination time, minimize wasted time and cut down on expenses. Micro-Trips aren’t for everyone, they are for those that are ready to throw themselves into a destination and make the most of every hour! They are the counter for those who say they have no time, no vacation days and not enough money for a 1-2-week trip. Micro-Trips need a great deal of enthusiasm, favorable flight times, favorable time-zone changes and lots of energy to ensure success!
More and more travellers are now attributing a higher value to experiences vs material possessions – making experiential travel another major trend for 2019! In an effort to escape mass travel and generic experiences, travellers are seeking authentic adventurous experiences that immerse them into their cultures and provide an element of personalization. There is a noticeable shift away from one-size-fits-all packaged tourism to one that is focused on creating lasting memories.
Off the beaten path experiences tie into this trend as well, redirecting travellers to lesser-known and out-of-the-way destinations away from the well-trodden paths of overcrowded tourist attractions by offering an unspoiled travel experience. Sometimes the best travel experiences come from the spots that the masses haven’t discovered just yet. 😉
So, there you have it – 6 Travel and Tourism Trends to consider when booking your next getaway! If there are any others you’d like to hear more about, drop us a comment!
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