2018 was a year for some new travel trends and emerging popular destinations. Here’s our top six.
1.Europe. The increasingly popular Italy and Croatia were the favourite destinations in Europe in 2018, but lesser known countries have been gaining popularity, and we expect this to continue in 2019. Head for areas without the swarming tourists such as Belarus, Poland, Cyprus and Moldova.
2. Family travel. Taking the kids on more adventurous holidays has definitely seen an increase, and there has been an emerging trend for single-parent family travel. Gone are the days of traditional two parent holidays. Intrepid Travel for example has seen a 16% growth in family bookings, and will be offering single parent pricing in the near future.
3. Experiences. Experiential tours have been on the rise this year, with many tour companies seeing huge increases in bookings for tours that offer cooking classes, local market visits, wine tasting, local shopping tours and cultural immersions.
4. Winter. Traditionally the ‘off season’, winter has become the new ‘peak season’! Winter festivals and markets are attracting millions of tourists every year. Be prepared to book a full year in advance, or you’ll probably miss out. Holidays to Finnish Lapland have been hugely popular this year, as have attractions such as the Swedish Ice Hotel, and Japan ski holidays seem to now be an Aussie favourite.
5. Solo Travel. Google searches for solo travel and travel alone in 2018 were the highest they have ever been. Plenty of tour companies are now offering singles only tours, no supplements for single travellers and even some cruise lines are coming on board with solo cabins.
6. Japan. According to the Australian Federation of Travel Agents, the biggest increase in outbound travel was to Japan in 2018, with a 16.4% increase in travel to this country. We have certainly seen how popular this country is with holiday-makers. People are getting more adventurous and heading beyond Tokyo and Japan, and ski holidays are hugely popular.