10 travel trends for 2010

The News

Scene Advisor has announced the results of its annual travel trends survey of 10 traveling industry advisors. ‘Video conferencing’, ‘Eco luxe’, ‘Traincations’ — these are the buzzwords for this year.

Behind the News

International columnists, veteran jetsetters, philosophers, bloggers, travel experts… 10 traveling experts present insight to help you make the most of 2010 travels.

Scene Advisor’s veteran jetsetters — international travel experts who do base their existence on studying travel trends – expect travel to decline significantly among the younger generation, while boomers are expected to travel more in the next 12 months. The following trends and tips were garnered from these inside influencers. These 10 jetsetting Scene Advisors are reading their crystal balls for the new year, and here are some of their predictions:

1. Budget options :: Kim Tan, Travel writer

Reflecting the current economic setting, travel professionals are hot on the new bargains, noting that it’s expected that value for money will be the top priority, with concept and branding taking a backseat in the coming years. Luxury hotel and tour operators will thrive if they can demonstrate why it’s worth paying a bit more for an extraordinary experience. With a bit of resourcefulness, bargain-store travel can easily mean a comfortable bed and a nice meal. Take a step down from what you chose when you had money to burn. Rather, just go for what looks like the best rate, and dig deeper for complementary give-aways, such as a free night’s stay on a multiple night stay, gift cards, spa credits, coupons and free dining etc. – KT

2. Killing Germs :: Sean Flynn, Travel blogger

A few years ago SARS was a traveler’s worst viral nightmare, but it was soon rivaled by H1N1 in 2009, a virus that interrupted many vacations to Mexico before turning into a global pandemic. These viruses have caused many travelers to be much more wary about being in confined spaces like airplanes with other passengers for long distances. The Global fliers are not taking the H1N1 warnings lightly, as the majority of fliers indicate that they are concerned about germs, bacteria and viruses when traveling, more so than last year. Seventy-seven pe rcent of travelers said they are washing their hands more often on the road than they normally do, an increase of 17 per cent from one year ago.

* We’re predicting that Mexico City will overcome last year’s swine flu crisis, as visitors seek out its top museums, amazing archaeology and great food, while Abu Dhabi is positioned as the new and somewhat more restrained Dubai. – SF

3. Mixing business with pleasure :: Scott Mitchem, NYTimes.com

Expect travelers to travel more in 2010 than in 2009. Forty-one per cent of U.S. respondents said they plan to spend more on business and leisure travel in 2010 than they did in 2009. But many travelers have linked the economical and viable to mix business with pleasure. Business travelers now look for accommodation options that cater to all their business needs while providing leisure activities as well, so they can enjoy the best of both worlds.

4. Video conferencing :: Tom Amafador, Miami Travel News

Travel… without taking the trip. Video conferencing and Telepresence have developed considerably since the 1990s. Today’s business, economic and social climates position video conferencing tools as a practical alternative to business travel. The model has trend-breaking potential for business travel and corporate meeting spend. While this Video conferencing has been on every travel trend list for the past seven years, 2010 will be its year. Video-conferencing will be the lead trend in 2010. Only now is Telepresence starting to be built on technologies that can reproduce a high-quality interaction. Once all this becomes cost-effective, the business travel sector will be taking a gigantic drop. -TA

5. Airline fees :: Kevin Toma, Adventure Travel Experts

Airlines will continue to hit travellers with more fees, not only for things like checking bags but also for how you book your ticket, choice seat selection, flying in prime time, rebanking frequent flier miles, even switching to an earlier flight.

• Also, airlines will move closer to using plant-based bio-fuels in commercial jets.

6. Eco luxe :: Lee Meith, Telegraph

Travellers are more and more aware of the environmental credentials of hotels, which, thankfully, are increasingly going the extra mile to lower carbon emissions. For example Fregate (www.fregate.com), a private island in the Seychelles, is saving sea birds and makes its own spa products, while the Vigilius mountain resort in South Tyrol, Italy, harnesses natural energy (www.vigilius.it).

* Also, Traincations: Travel pros are seeing a growing pressure in the industry to provide exotic travel and customized, ultimate experiences. With rail travel in Europe, getting to your destination is more fun, and has become even more popular with the new high-speed rail links into Spain and Italy.

7. Security :: Siddharth Nandi, Travel Writer

You could be subjected to a body scan at the airport, thanks to new technology. With whole-body scanners: You enter a booth and your body is scanned. In another room a full image of your body is shown to the security force. The airport security force can easily see what they refer to as metallic and non-metallic threats. The machines are now at certain airports for test periods, and are expected to become more of a standard at airports.

8. Resorts :: Siddharth Nandi, Travel Writer

* Airfares are going up, travel sales will plateau, but hotel and resort prices are going down. Because of this resorts in popular destinations dependent on air travelers — Caribbean, Hawaii, Latin America — will be particularly good values. All-inclusive resorts will gain popularity with budget-conscious travelers. Booking early is the best way to get the lowest airfare.

9. Vacation packages :: Clare Magrow, flightcentre.co.uk

Vacation packages will be the best overall value. Hotels are not keen to lower their standalone rates, but will do so as part of a package. Travelers who bundle flight and hotel will save the most.

10. Haycations :: Samantha Trinh, travel blogger

You may have done staycations (you had one even without knowing it had a name), so perhaps we could interest you in a haycation. These are interactive farm stays where city-dwellers visit in order to gather their own eggs, make cheese and even learn to butcher an animal. Travelers who bundle flight and hotel will save the most.

Courtesy of SceneAdvisor

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