by Jordan Higgins
Tourism is a constantly evolving industry. As more and more people travel worldwide, the travel options are becoming increasingly exotic by the day. 2018 saw the rise of yoga retreats and winter getaways, and 2019 looks to build further from that. As the world of travel fluctuates to accommodate new trends, it is useful to stay on top of the changes to get the most out of your 2019 holiday!
1. Cycle Tourism
Cycle tours are nothing new. Active travellers have been cycling across the world in an attempt to see new places at eye-level for years. It is only now, however, that the rest of the world is catching on, en-masse to the joys of cycle tourism. As more and more travellers opt for the bicycle, it is easy to imagine cycle tourism exploding in popularity in 2019. With this realisation, local guides around the world have started to offer tours on two wheels as cheap, fun, healthy and green options. In particular, the cycle-friendly haven of western Europe is expected to see a massive influx of foreign bike tourists pedalling amongst the locals as they go about their daily chores!
2. Solo Travel
Travelling alone is often portrayed as an activity only for the bravest of tourists. However, as the tourism industry gets more organised and transparent in its offerings (thanks a lot to the accessibility of the internet), the opportunities to travel solo are becoming more numerous. Tour companies are now designing special tour plans for solo travellers that are highly engaging, help maintain your privacy, and most importantly, are safe. South America, and Chile in particular has been a staple on many backpacking bucket lists in recent years, recommended as a friendly and fascinating place to explore solo!
Always wanted to experience the wonders of living in the wilderness but despised the thought of doing so in a classic camping setting? If you answered yes, then glamping is the 2019 travel trend for you. Glamorous camping has been growing in popularity for years as more travellers opt for the comfort of resort-style wild locations over a typical tent. For a particularly quirky glamping location, why not head to County Sligo in Ireland where a local has set up a transport-themed “Glamping Village” equipped with trains, buses, black cabs, and the stunning centre piece: A Boeing 767. This bizarre glamping location is set to open in 2019, just in time for the predicted glamping boom.
4. Adventure Travel
Some people envisage white sand beaches, great food, and general relaxation when they hear the word “travel”. Others, however, dream of jungle treks, white-water rafting, snow sports, and mountain biking. If the latter sounds appealing, you are in luck, because the already popular adventure travel is all set to scale newer heights in 2019. An increasing number of travellers are seeking an escape from mundane everyday life to sign up for adrenaline spiking extreme sports, and how! So why not add roughing it out in the Amazon, camping in the Omani desert, driving through Mongolia or even better, climbing a mountain in each of the continents to your 2019 bucket list ?
5. Family Travel
Once upon a time family holidays were typically limited to beach destinations or theme parks, but now family holidays can be so much more. Special family-orientated travel itineraries, branded under the title of Kid Friendly tours are being offered by tourism providers unanimously across the globe, with options ranging from biking with fitted child carrier seats through the Tuscan countryside and signing up for the Sound of Music tour in Salzburg, to doing dolphin encounters in Perth. Do not worry about bringing your young children abroad; local guides can make sure any trip is safe and fun for both them and you!
6. Wilderness Escapes
City breaks have always been a popular travel trend, helping understand the culture and everyday life of a country. That said, wilderness getaways are now growing in popularity to escape the crowded cities and fill your lungs with fresh air in the world’s most remote corners. So go ahead and set up on a dive boat in the middle of the Indian ocean, go on a safari in Tanzania or make your way to a remote yet inhabited island like the Faroe Islands in the North Atlantic Ocean, boasting rich culture and stunning scenery and an untouched vibe!
7. Digital Detox
Fast-paced modern life can be incredibly stressful, intense, and overwhelming. Not a wonder “Digital Detox” retreats and resorts are popping up worldwide, combining an escape to the countryside with a complete lack of connection to the outside world. Like any de-addiction facility, this may seem scary at first but is a fantastic way to reconnect with yourself. Switch off your phone, pack away your laptop and embrace this unique experience.
8. Culinary Tour
A scrumptious way to experience a new destination is to sample its local cuisine. A large number of tourists today choose specific travel destinations based on the rationale of tasting a cuisine at the place it is best cooked; locally. Tour guides and enthusiastic locals alike are catering (excuse the pun) to food tours more than ever before. From inhaling the essence of the spice markets of Morocco and chomping down on satay skewers at the hawker centre in Singapore, to a cheese-tasting drive through Normandy, the world is your oyster! (you get those best at the southern most tip of New Zealand)
9. Budget Travel
While the desire to see and experience grows with more travel, limited resources may call for shoestring budgets. The good news is that budget travel can be as much fun, if not more. Budget friendly apps and websites such as Couchsurfing, Friend Theory and BlaBla Car help with transport and accommodation that need not break the bank. Better still, travel websites such as tourHQ help link up with locals who can show you the hidden gems of the city away from the tourist traps, for a completely authentic experience. Travel is no longer a hobby of the wealthy, but a necessity for anyone looking to expand their horizons.
10. Pop Culture
Ever wondered where your favourite television show was filmed? Or where your favourite author grew up? If you answered yes, then pop culture tourism could be the 2019 travel trend for you! These trips can be organised by local guides all around the world. Some of the most popular destinations include Dubrovnik in Croatia, where tourists flock to see the set of Game of Thrones, or the Lord of the Rings sets that pepper New Zealand’s South Island.
11. Personalised travel
As the travel bucket list grows, travellers are seeking to experience a place like it’s the first and last time they will ever visit; there are after all so many other destinations to discover rather than revisit the same place twice! They hence want to see the place on their own terms, as per their own interests, likes and dislikes. This explains why private tours are gaining prominence, with local tour guides providing completely customised travel plans to travellers, a far cry from the cookie cutter tours that target a one size fits all policy. 2019 marks the exponential growth in this trend, a prediction to the direction the travel industry will take, in deference to traveller tastes.
Jordan is an avid traveller and journalist. He has a strong interest in Asian countries but will never say no to a European excursion. He is particularly fond of (although not very good at) trying new outdoor activities and adventure sports.