Travel Predictions for 2011
Hot destinations, new experiences, old favourites with a twist? What about the effect of the digital world on how we plan our voyages? A look back at the last year, with the conversations generated at Indigo PRCo, has helped shape our vision for the year ahead. What are my top predictions? And more importantly… what are yours?
1. With the news that 1 in 13 people in the world are now on Facebook, and rumours that Mark Zuckerberg is planning an FB rival to Google-owned Gmail, I predict the development of Facebook: The Concierge Service. A user-led service, with tailor-made holidays, restaurant choices, events invites etc. put together for you by analysing you and your friends “likes”, your places check-ins and browsing your photographs, status updates and posts.
2. Full-immersion “expert” holidays… Not content to be sat in the jeep with the wildlife 200 yards ahead, it’s all about getting stuck in. Travellers can and will research everything online first, and will come prepared. They want experts to challenge their knowledge, surprise them and push the boundaries of expectations. One such guide is Abraham Banda of Norman Carr Safaris in Zambia – Wanderlust’s Silver Medal-winning guide of 201o. Hear him speak abotu his experience on BBC Radio 4′s Excess baggage.
3. The rise of the “local hotel” – the hotel as a reference point within a particular culture, reflecting that culture through every experience, from the food to the interiors, the knowledge of its staff, the sourcing of its produce and art work, its investment in local community and ties to local cultural events and outposts. Hotels such as The Yeatman in Portugal, a veritable multisensory shrine to port wine culture. Or the soon-to-open Canal House by A Curious Group of Hotels, celebrating the history of merchant life in Amsterdam to the present day through its restored architecture, personalised itineraries and maps for visitors and evocative Dutch menu.