19 Feb 2018 Travel Trends
We’ve compiled a list of this year’s trends in travel to help you plan for what’s ahead. From technological advancements in luggage to entirely new modes of transportation… 2018 is already shaking things up.
As competition for business class flights heats up, you’ll see upgraded features from airlines that share routes. Starting this spring, Delta Air Lines will add its Delta One cabin with flatbed seats and premium bedding on some longer flights such as New York to San Diego and Las Vegas, Honolulu to Atlanta and Minneapolis, and Boston to Los Angeles. The announcement follows JetBlue’s decision to add its flatbed product, Mint, to several longer domestic flights over the past three years.
From Assateague to Zion, our Nation’s parks encompass a wide range of landscapes that drew over 310 million people in 2017! The uptick in park visitors is expected to persist throughout 2018, owing in part to the Find Your Park campaign that rolled out in April of 2017. Even amidst rising entrance fees at 17 of the parks, park tourism is at a record high.
As family vacations increase in popularity, so does the demand for a destination babysitter. Companies like Nanny Poppinz and Care.com help put people in touch with hourly nannies in their area, allowing for a date night during family trips. For those seeking some kid-free time, travel experts also suggest choosing a hotel with babysitting services, kid-friendly cruises, or booking an extra room within a suite for some added breathing room for everyone.
In this age of technology, simply disconnecting has become a luxury. As population density rises and work is ever-calling, many are seeking a remote refuge from everyday life. Luxury was once defined as expensive or elite, but its meaning is expanding to include unique, off-grid reprieves from the norm. An uninterrupted view of the Aurora from a small, secluded cabin is a rare, valuable experience.
They say it takes 21 days to form a new habit, but how many days does it take to fully experience a city? Vacations that stretch beyond 2 weeks have increased in popularity as travelers desire full immersion at their destinations. When you don’t feel pressured to go everywhere and do everything in a short span of time, you’re free to experience a location at the pace of a local. Details can get lost in hurried trips spent running from site to site. Extended stays promote a deeper, more thorough experience.
More Business Travel Results in Rising Costs
According to GBTA, the global economy is expected to grow 3.6% in 2018, which will lead to more business travel and rising prices. Hotel rates are forecasted to increase 2.9%, airfares to increase 2.3%, and ground transportation costs to increase 1% in North America. The steepest Increases are anticipated in Eastern Europe where experts project airfare will cost as much as 7.1% more in 2018.
Medical Tourism / Wellness Vacay
As the price of medical coverage soars in America, people are increasingly inclined to explore other avenues and destinations for cosmetic or routine procedures. According to Healthbase, nearly half a million Americans visit Asia, Mexico, and South America each year to seek medical treatment. Occasionally, the difference in cost can cover the trip and travel expenses while offering a new place in which to explore or recover.
Adventure / Achievement Travel
If you enjoy an energetic lifestyle at home, why abandon those habits during a trip? Travel planned around a sport or adventure is becoming increasingly commonplace. Training for a half marathon? Sign up for a race in a place you’ve always wanted to explore. These types of trips are especially alluring to solo travelers, as many races provide an itinerary, suggested hotels, or host group meet-ups.
Hyperloop / The Boring Company
The Boring Company, a tunnel construction company, was founded by Elon Musk in late 2016. They plan to bore a series of tunnels for fast, safe transit in highly populated locations. In addition to the routes they’ve started testing in California, projects are underway in Chicago and along the East Coast. If things go as planned, you could be traveling from New York to Washington DC in under 30 minutes.
Nature lodges are gaining in popularity among those seeking a more immersive experience in nature. They tend to utilize the natural environment more than green hotels. They’re also generally more active in nature and wildlife conservation, more focused on educating visitors about the flora and fauna of local ecosystems, and more deeply connected with the area’s indigenous culture.
Smart bags are revolutionizing packing for travel with built-in features like GPS locators, weight scales, USB charging stations, solar-powered batteries, and luggage that even follows you as you walk! If you’re considering replacing your regular bag with a smart(er) version, be sure to look for one with a removable battery. Beginning in 2018, new regulations from several airlines will require passengers to remove the battery for safety reasons before flying.