7 Travel Trends for 2018 That Will Drive the Global Tourism Industry

Posted on Jan 23 2018 - 9:51pm by Olivia Williams Jones

With population growth comes the rise in the demand for tourist packages and exciting vacations. Just like the entertainment industry, tourism is booming and coming back stronger every year, probably due to the same factor – pure, unadulterated hedonism. Throughout the year, the incessant pace of everyday obligations and soul-crushing work leaves people thirsty for a grand escapade, and in 2018, the menu has never been so long and varied. If this fact alone makes you pumped for the coming vacation, read on to find out what seven travel trends for 2018 will drive the global tourism industry.

Experience more important than comfort

Traveling used to be all about comfort. Even today, most casual travelers will look for tasteful hotels that offer scheduled meals and exclusive access to a nearby beach. However, there is a strikingly different subculture that is looking for completely opposite offers from agencies – flexible experiences that will provide them with the basics and leave them to revel in the experience.

Loose framework better than schedule

These people are looking for authentic bed and breakfast accommodations or Airbnb setups. They do not want scheduled guided tours; instead, they use their trusty cell phone to tell them where they are going, they gather information and use GPS completely independently from any guides. In many ways, this is the best way to “get your hands dirty” and truly get a feel of the country you are visiting.

Free marketing via social media shared photos and videos

In relation to the aforementioned cell phones, mobile bookings, ratings and social network activities are through the roof. With the access to high-quality phone cameras, people are making audio-visual diaries of their travels as they upload photos and videos to their social media profiles. This alone is a form of self-replicating marketing for many popular regions in the world. Furthermore, short video formats are slowly replacing the ever so popular endless photo-ops, which make the destination appear even more appealing.

LGBTQ travel is on the rise

Up to 7% of world trotting travelers identify as members of LGBTQ community, and vibrant tourism targeted for this population has been booming like mad over the last three years. In fact, the statistics are showing that LGBTQ identifying people are traveling more often and have different spending habits than members of the cisgender population.

And so is female solo traveling

80% of all travel decisions are made by women, married or single. Naturally, as western culture encourages equality and independence, this also reflects on tourism – there is a noticeable increase in arrangements made by solo female travelers who are just as bold and adventurous in their choice of packages as their male counterparts – in 2018, solo female travelers are looking for challenging traveling experiences more than comfortable, pampering setups in five star hotels and world-class spas.

Food tourism never goes out of style

Gourmet inspired vacations have actually been at the heart of traveling since forever – throughout history, many people have been prepared to embark on long pilgrimages just to mingle in the region that is known for their dream food, be it cheese or pasta.

Appropriately, there is a significant increase in interest in the food travel market. In fact, the World Food Travel Association has concluded that the industry is generating more than 150 billion US dollars per year. If this number does not give you a coronary, neither will a salty Bavarian weisswurst.

Adhering to this statistic, travel agencies are looking to capitalize on such a lucrative trend and offer some delish sounding packages. In fact, one of the popular trends right now consists of having an exquisite world-class meal in your living room by hiring a personal chef service, while regions like Singapore offer a bona fide event out of a visit to the farmer’s market where you haggle over condiments and watch food being prepared on the spot.

Blood-pumping adventures against mundane boredom

As it turns out, before your typical 2018 traveler indulges in a region-specific meal, they’re looking to fill up on something else – a blood-pumping activity or an experience that will leave them exasperated and excited. Plunging into the depths off the coast of the Cayman Islands to investigate haunting shipwrecks, hiking on the steep slopes of Swiss Alps or driving across the African safari as the wind blows-back your hair are only some of the adrenaline-inducing adventures travelers seek out. Additionally, it appears they mostly opt for bikes to move around, even when the terrain is not particularly friendly.

Travel preferences tend to evolve with the constant flow of dangerous hotspots and simmering conflict zones, but they never alter the landscape completely. People know what makes their heart flutter with excitement and they recognize true beauty when it stands right in front of them. Global safety concerns notwithstanding, the demand for more travel packages and preferences continues to grow at a relentless pace, and it appears 2018 will be a busy and exciting year for tourism. All things considered, it’s not hard to discern one thing from these travel trends – working hours might have become crueler around the world, but quite fittingly, people like to party and travel just as hard as they work.

Olivia Williams Jones
Follow me

Related Posts

About the Author

Olivia is psychologist and entrepreneur from Brisbane. Mother of two beautiful children and proud owner of two silly boxer dogs, Teo and Mia. She is passionate about writing and always inspiring her readers to be clever in their lives. Her motto is "Be the change you want to see in the world".