Top 10 Travel Trends of the Future

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Top 10 Travel Trends
Grand Wailea beach in Maui.

Top 10 Future Travel Trends

I am always scouring the web for interesting travel related articles. Today I came across a great one from travel guidebook company Lonely Planet. They have named the Top 10 Travel Trends of the Future as they see them.

Lets take a look at the travel trends:

1. Travel as life, not luxury – Travel is more accessible than ever for more people. The world is getting smaller and even language barriers are breaking down.

2. International Festival Fever – More people are circling the globe to attend celebrations than ever before. Whether it is a attending a local music festival or a large event like the World Cup, more people are traveling to get there.

3. Flights of Fantasy – Air travel is becoming more luxurious on both the top and bottom ends. While lie-flat seats and luxury food and drink are becoming the norm in business class, airlines are competing on the bottom end to add things like free wifi. (I tend to disagree as first class products are going away and economy seating is being crammed in. Business class is better than ever though.

4. Evolution of Airports – Airports are evolving and becoming better than ever by adding everything from high-end spas to museums.

5. Rise of Experience Hotels – Hotels that provide an experience for adventure seeking travelers are becoming more popular.

6. Smarter sustainable travel – Travel companies are taking green to a whole new level. It just isn’t about the carbon offset of your next flight, but instead every part of travel is now becoming more environmentally friendly.

7. Travel planning in your palm (or nose) – We have greater access to travel information than ever before. This will continue to grow as augmented reality applicaitions improve.

8. The lure of unplugged travel – More and more people are seeking isolating experiences where they are off the grid.

9. Return to local knowledge – As online review systems mature, travelers are returning to face to face and local reviews over those of strangers.

10. Virtual travel – As technology improves, travelers will seek virtual experiences to see the places on their bucket lists. (Marriott seems to think so.)

Analysis

Obviously I just summarized the original article and highly suggest heading over to Lonely Planet for the full read. I agree with just about everything here. Travel trends are changing at a rapid pace, because the world is changing just as fast.

While I might disagree that economy travel is getting better (i.e. slimline seats, 10 across seating), in general most everything else is spot on. I have personally seen experience hotels and sustainable travel intitiatives on display in India where travel is growing at a rapid pace.

In the U.S., our airports are aging and have a long way to go to improve, however cities like Hong Kong, Amsterdam and Singapore have really pioneered the airport experience. It will be interesting to see how airports evolve in developing countries.

Finally travel planning really is turning virtual. I wrote the other day that Google Flights is being integrated into Google Now. This type of automatic integration of information is revolutionizing the way we search for travel.

It’s definitely an exciting time. What do you think? Did they miss any other travel trends?


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