The Newest Adventure Travel Trends You Should Know
Trends in Post-Pandemic Adventure Travel
As COVID-19 restrictions are lifted across the globe, people are reinvigorated to the the prospect of travel. After being cooped up from COVID, more and more people are expressing interest in thrill-seeking and adventure travel. The World Health Organization and UNWTO are urging nations to eliminate travel bans and mandatory vaccinataion requirements so prospective adventurers can begin safely traveling again. Because of these efforts, there is already a marked increase in domestic and international travel. In an effort to respect the communities they are visiting; adventure travelers want to get the most they are able to out of a trip while still opting for the most sustainable travel and adventure options possible and maintaining safe distance from locals in the community to avoid putting them at risk of exposure to COVID-19. We’ve noticed these trends among adventure travel enthusiasts around the world:
In addition to seeking out locally sourced food and drink, travelers are more conscious of how their food is prepared, the ethics of its sourcing and preparation, and the sustainability practices of the company that prepared it. Locally sourced or foraged food and drink is now being offered as an emphasized attraction by many adventure travel companies, and outdoor vacation destinations are working hard to keep up with this uptick in interest and demand.
Travelers are also more aware of the impact that their food consumption and food choices have on the environment and local habitats. Many in the outdoor industry are now making sure that they offer plant-based menu items with a smaller eco-footprint than they did in the past. There is also an increasing awareness of the environmental impact of certain farming industry crops like coffee, and consumers demand more sustainable options. This gives those in the industry a chance to not only cater to the needs of a more eco-conscious traveler, but offer educational opportunities about sustainability along the way.
As the travel and adventure demographic skews younger and more and more people are either working from home or eschewing traditional 9-5 jobs entirely, we are seeing more people with nomadic tendencies than ever before. There has been a significant shift in mentality towards the idea of nomadism or digital nomadism, with more people taking longer trips that allow them to ‘live like a local.’
This has prompted some countries to develop a ‘digital nomad visa’ to cater to this new demographic. These adventure enthusiasts want immersion in the culture and will stay much longer and spend more money than families on short-term vacations or couples looking for a weekend getaway.
Diversity and Inclusion
With the change in demographic of the average post-pandemic traveler, we’re also seeing a more diverse and inclusive group of adventure-seekers. Accessible tourism is being prioritized, and more people are demanding inclusive and accessible vacation and adventure opportunities across the globe. With so many underserved groups now becoming more aware of the benefits of returning to nature and experiencing the great outdoors and different cultural attractions, there is an increased need for accessible travel and outdoor activities options throughout the industry.
Environmental Impact Awareness of Travel
Sustainability is becoming a significant topic in the outdoor activities industry. Travelers are more conscious of their impact on the the local communities they travel through or stay in. They are becoming more insistent on sustainable practices across the board, including at resorts and hotels, campsites, RV parks, airlines, and other public venues. The savviest of consumers are searching for sustainable travel options and choosing to spend their money with companies that make it clear that their business is mindfully thought through and environmentally forward.
Consistency in Domestic Travel Trends
Around half of all global travelers plan to travel domestically this holiday season into 2023. The number of prospective travelers is higher in the US than in Europe. Interestingly, the adventure travel market is showing the most promise, with people wanting to continue their time in nature while still seeking thrilling and unique new travel opportunities. Adventure travel companies and outdoor industry members cater to these new outdoor enthusiasts by offering all-inclusive adventure packages such as guided hikes and mini-getaways in remote locations.
Improvement in International Travel Trends
International travel continues to improve after its significant dip in 2020 sparked by the pandemic. There is expected to be an increase in international travel throughout 2023 as more restrictions are lifted and people are anxious to throw pandemic restrictions out the window in favor of adventure and thrill-seeking again. International spending is expected to increase over 90% going into 2023 as more nations lift their travel bans and decrease their vaccination restrictions.
The Rural and Community Elements of Travel
Even before the pandemic, “over tourism” was a topic of debate among those in the industry. Some popular destinations were already making efforts to reduce their visitor load in an effort to preserve their natural landscape and decrease the burden on the local community. Tourists and adventurers are more interested in visiting remote, lesser-known locations and seeking out memorable opportunities. As social media’s popularity and the need to share every moment with the public increases, potential guests will look for the perfect photo op and thrilling expeditions to share with their follower base.
The increase of interest in visiting remote or rural areas does hold the potential to place undue burdens on affected communities and expose them to COVID-19. Many such remote locations don’t have the infrastructure to handle increased occupants and don’t have access to vaccinations or other life-saving medication or equipment should they be exposed to something unique.
Action can be taken now to mitigate these risks, and those in the outdoor industry can do their part to ensure that travelers are taking part in safe, sustainable activities that have minimal negative disruption to the surrounding communities.
Keep an Eye on the Latest Adventure Travel Trends
At Advanced Outdoor Solutions, we can help you keep an eye on the latest trends in adventure travel and outdoor activities. It is our mission to inform those in the industry of the changes and prospective trends we will face in the coming years, particularly as we continue to adjust—and respond to—the COVID-19 pandemic.
In addition to market research, we also offer management, marketing, and accounting services to the outdoor tourism industry, as well as third party property management services, including human resources, staffing, compliance, and quality assurance assessments. To learn more about these services, contact us today at 1-800-579-9796 or fill out our online contact form.