Euromonitor predicts new travel trends for 2013

THE WTM Global Trends Report 2012, in association with Euromonitor International, once again highlights some of the key emerging trends in the global travel and tourism industry.

This year’s report highlights nine key emerging travel and tourism trends worldwide, looking at how the global, regional and national political, social and economic situation is shaping the travel industry.

Americas: The Attraction of Forbidden Lands

Since 2010, countries previously off-limits to American tourists have become open; benefiting economically from tourism revenue. Caroline Bremner, head of Travel and Tourism Research at Euromonitor said, “It’s a small but growing market. Most US visitors to previously banned countries are expected to come from the Baby Boomer generation.”

UK: Tingo rips up the Rule Book

Tingo, owned by TripAdvisor, introduced a new business model in 2012 that takes advantage of cancellation and refund policies to offer customers the best hotel rates. The website uses Expedia Affiliate Network and automatically rebooks travellers’ reservations when there is a price drop for the booked rooms up to 24 hours before check-in.

Europe: Bric’s Grand Shopping Tour

Brazil, Russia, India and China are embracing shopping tourism in key European destinations. Dynamic economic growth has led to rapidly increasing disposable income levels in these countries. Together with increased awareness of an improved quality of life, consumers from BRIC countries are keen to spend more on travel.

Middle East: Rise of Shopping Hotels

Big spenders with cash are driving the trend for Middle Eastern hotels built inside shopping malls. Wealthy consumers from Bahrain and Saudi Arabia have disposable income and love shopping, thus mega-malls in the Middle East are booming. Shopping malls and associated hotel developments are key elements in the recovery of tourism, which saw a difficult year in 2011.

Africa: Destination Nollywood

Nigeria’s massive film industry, dubbed Nollywood, is the world’s second largest film industry in volume terms, after India’s Bollywood and ahead of Hollywood, with more than 2,000 films produced annually. The increasing popularity of Nollywood in many African countries will be a major growth driver with the leisure sector attracting film fans.

Global Village: Digital Detox

In a time when technology is an intrinsic part of everyday life, with more consumers addicted to their devices, some hotels are going against the tide, helping guests to check in and switch off. Some hotels are offering “technology-free” packages as an escape for busy travellers.

Travel Technology: The Power of Smart TVs

Smart TVs are about to take off. With brands like Samsung, LG, Sony, Panasonic, Sharp and Toshiba launching their first smart TVs, the days of TV as a one-way entertainment medium will soon be over. In the future, people watching travel programmes will be able to make immediate bookings through their smart TVs via travel apps or web links.

Asia: Car Brands Take on Hotels

Luxury car brands are leveraging the popularity of luxury brands across Asia and making inroads in the hotel sector. Tonino Lamborghini plans to open 40 five-star hotels in Asia, with the first nine opening in China and may expand internationally in the future. Other brands like Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, Ferrari, Maserati, Bentley and Jaguar are also looking to develop in the hotels sector.

India: Gold Rush on Low Cost

Gold is considered to be a safe haven for savings in India, especially during times of global uncertainty. Q1 2012 saw gold worth $5 billion exported from Dubai to India alone. Low-cost carriers operating between the Gulf and India have helped cement this travel trend by providing cheap fares for tourists and Non-Resident Indians (NRI) alike.