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Saturday, February 3, 2018

Got Wanderlust? Millennial Travel is the New Trend for Luxury Travel

Millennial International and Overseas Travel Trends for Vacation and Holidays

The Millennial - The largest generation is the new target for international travel. But what do Millennials want when they travel?

Millennial Jill Stevens says she "wants to see it all!"
(photo courtesy of Jill Stevens)

Adventure Travel is the overwhelming trend in Millennial Travel

Some of us may long for quiet time at a secluded resort with every whim taken care of, but the trends and desires of travelers is changing over time.  Adventure travel, as the name suggests, is not for luxury travelers who would plan only on the beach.  Adventure Tourism is one of the fastest-growing trends in the travel domain.  Defining exactly what it means is a little tricky. While for one group of travelers, adventure could mean leisurely biking and hiking tours, for the other group, it might entail base jumping into an underground cave in Mexico. So the main facets of adventure tourism usually include traveling to a distant location, interacting with different cultures and undertaking a physical activity of some kind.  According to Start The Adventure, adventure travel overwhelmingly appeals to millennials.  Mountain trekking was the number-one trip style sought by millennials, followed by sailing trips, island-hopping, music-related travel and foodie trips.

Completing the list of the top 10 travel choices are sustainable travel, spring-break, hop-on/hop-off tours, wildlife safaris, and active adventures.

Globetrotting is becoming easier and more common!

International travel - The recent trend of low-cost airlines and Airbnb make it more affordable to travel internationally. This ease of access is driving younger travelers to visit a variety of European cities, including Rome, London, Dublin, Madrid, Barcelona and Amsterdam.  Likewise, low fares to Asia and the Pacific have put some farther-flung cities top of mind for millennials and student travelers. Destinations such as Tokyo, Manila, Bangkok and Auckland, New Zealand, are all high on their lists.

Far-off lands are of interest for a more distressing reason: Younger travelers are increasingly seeking adventures in destinations that are endangered as they feel an urgency to visit places like the Arctic before they are transformed by climate change or that cultures are being affected by geopolitical events.
Ice Castle in Edmonton, Canada.  Are sites like this in danger due to climate change?
(photo courtesy of Jill Stevens)

Here are the top 10 countries that millennials want to visit in 2018:

1. Australia
2. New Zealand
3. Italy
4. U.K.
5. Spain
6. Thailand
7. Portugal
8. Costa Rica
9. Philippines
10. Peru

Social Media has changed the way travel destinations are promoted

Gone are the days of paper maps and brochures for the younger generations.  They turn to their friends, coworkers, and influencers within the expanding social media world to find travel and vacation inspiration.  Millennial Jill Stevens from Hickory, North Carolina says: "I often choose my travel by seeing pictures on Instagram or other websites and saying, 'That looks cool.  I want to go there!' Then I look at ways to make it happen!" A recent study showed that 87% of Millennial travelers are looking at Facebook for travel inspiration and 85% of them will check multiple sites before booking their travel to get the best deal possible.

“Even though I'm a Jedi, I am not invincible.”
― Jude Watson, The Dangerous Rescue

According to the ITB World Travel Trends Report, international outbound travelers are more likely to be affected by health issues or crime than by terror attacks.  For the most part, travel safety is pretty similar for everyone: do your research, watch your stuff, be careful who you trust. Please review LTD post on safety and security for international travel and travel insurance.  The younger generations always believe "it couldn't happen to me", but safety and security should be your primary concern no matter what your age!  However, the Millennial generation has some unique travel concerns to think about:

1.  You are never too young to Invest in Travel Insurance - especially if you may get injured - see LTD primer on Travel Insurance
2.  Be careful what you post online
3.  Protect your data when using public wifi
4.  Watch your phone and valuables - phone theft on public transportation or in crowds is common
5.  Use common sense in public situations such as watching your drink, staying with a buddy, and having a plan to get home are good practices.

Millennial Travelers are here to stay and if you don't think so, watch The Bachelor on February 5, 2018.

This was recognized by one River Cruise line, Uniworld, who has launched a Millennial brand: U by Uniworld.  LTD has experience with River Cruising and Uniworld is LTD's recommended river cruise company.  U by Uniworld will be featured on an upcoming episode of The Bachelor.  LTD reviewed U by Uniworld and compared this product to traditional Uniworld River cruises:

1.  The fare is approximately 50% less
2.  Rooms are available for 3 travelers
3.  Wine and beer generally are not included
4.  Luxury decor is exchanged for contemporary decor, designed to appeal to passengers aged 21-45.
5.  Limited itineraries are available currently, covering the Seine, Rhine and Danube rivers.

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