The travel experts in our customer portfolio can no longer be counted on two hands. They literally reach from here to Thailand. The ideal panel for us to ask about their travel expectations for 2022. A year in which everyone (once again) hopes to be able to travel freely. But is that really possible? We asked eight of our clients: Interhome, Corendon, Sunny Cars, Visit Brabant, Visit Portugal, the Croatian National Tourist Board, Beaujean Vacances and the Tourism Authority of Thailand. Seven trends emerged that we list below.
Preparing for a holiday has changed for good
Travelling used to be peanuts: the only thing you really had to remember was your passport. Today, that list is a lot longer with mandatory mouth masks, CSTs and PLFs that you have to carry with you. Travel organisations and destinations are convinced that the way we travel and prepare for travel has changed forever. The focus on safety, security, hygiene and local measures will continue to play a role.
Destinations focus on extra nature experiences
The place where you're most unlikely to get a corona infection? Mother nature. This was clear to many in the early months of the pandemic: walking and cycling paths were trampled and new ones created. Nature became a second home for many. Also on holiday. Many destinations therefore put extra effort into an extensive route network for cyclists and walkers.
Impending shortage of rental cars and holiday homes
Just like nature, holiday homes and rental cars are a must-have on holiday since corona has plagued our lives. Both were soon regarded as a safe alternative to large-scale hotels or the airplane as means of transport. Both Interhome and Sunny Cars are urging you to book your holiday home or rental car on time, as there seems to be a real shortage of availability for popular summer destinations.
Ultra last minute as the new norm
But booking your holiday on time is currently not a given. This for fear of possible cancellations, changing measures at the destination or changing colour codes. Therefore, we postpone planning our trip as long as possible to avoid surprises. Tour operator Corendon has also noticed this trend: early bookings are lagging behind last-minute deals.
Faraway destinations are finally back
In the past two years, our travel pattern took a big hit. The quantity of our holidays decreased drastically, but so did the distance of our trips. We discovered more beautiful places close to home and stayed mainly within the borders of Europe. But it does not stay that way. The land of smiles, Thailand, notices in the bookings that Belgians are eager to travel further than the borders of Europe in 2022. The same goes for Corendon, who, with the expansion of their offer (Curaçao, Dominican Republic, Cape Verde and Zanzibar), can also win over a lot of Belgian travellers.
Slow Travel with longer stays
The Slow Travel trend was already gaining popularity, but is currently experiencing an enormous peak. This is because sustainable travel with more attention for local initiatives and entrepreneurs is becoming the new normal for many. Slow Travel means staying longer at a certain destination to discover more of the destination.
Workation as a mature travel segment
And the trend that really accelerated was that of the workation. Working from home became the norm and soon companies and employees noticed the advantages of working remotely. This soon resulted in a real workation trend. In anticipation of this trend, Croatia has already created a special permit for digital nomads: the Digital Nomad Residence Permit. This permit allows you to work on Croatian soil for up to 12 months.