Last year saw the tourism industry rocked by Covid and the resulting travel restrictions. However, with vaccines beginning to roll out, hope is blossoming for the travellers of the world and the many tourism businesses that rely on them. While it is unlikely that there will be a return to pre-covid travel levels immediately, there will be a return to travel, much of which is expected to be driven by travel trends that align with glamping perfectly.
So, here is a quick rundown of some of the 2021 travel trends you can expect to see, and potentially benefit from.
Planes, Trains & Automobiles
As 2020 came to a close, planes were grounded, flights were cancelled and trips suspended from the UK in response to a new variant of Covid, in what was just one of the numerous disruptions to air travel throughout the year. The uncertainty that now surrounds flying means that the new year is likely to bring a heavier focus on travelling by alternatives such as road or rail.
Beyond simply avoiding disruptions, a swap to cars, trains, bikes and more means travellers will be spending less time cramped in airports and is also more fitting with the slow travel many are expected to embrace as working from home increases.
However, people may not be travelling by any form of transport if another 2021 travel trend keeps up…
Staycations — a combination of “stay” and “vacations” — have become increasingly popular in recent years, and are predicted to grow further in 2021. This comes as a direct result of travel bans in certain countries, such as the UK, as well as a ripple out effect from financial issues caused by the pandemic.
A similar shift was seen in the UK following the 2008 financial crisis, when holidaymakers abandoned “traditional” trips abroad in favour of staying local. This often meant a wind-swept tent, but with the rising popularity and availability of glamping, it offers a perfect middle-ground for cost-conscious tourists looking to stay closer to home.
Wilderness, isolation and nature
With social distancing becoming the new normal, it’s no surprise that travellers in 2021 are expected to skip the city-breaks in favour of the great outdoors. Wide open spaces are likely to be more popular than cramped subways and busses, and it plays into the wider trend towards nature tourism that we have seen in recent years.
Pairing it with adventure tourism, many travellers could be looking for extended stays in remote places where traditional accommodation is simply not available. However, that doesn’t mean they will disregard the little luxuries of a vacation, so glamping structures could see a surge.
Wilderness and getting back to nature also go hand in hand with another trend expected to continue into 2021 — sustainable travel.
Probably one of the biggest travel trends in the past decade, sustainability has influenced many of the other shifts in travel as well as the tourism industry at large. It is reflective of far broader consumer trends, which see people increasingly focussed on how they and the products they buy impact the world.
When it comes to tourism, this means travellers will be looking for explicitly impactful vacations; how their tourism dollars impact local businesses; the environmental cost of their trips; and opting for greener alternatives. With this, the tourism industry is likely to see many shifts away from more traditional practices — such as single-use soaps in the bathroom —as well as an opening for more inherently green types of travel, trips, and accommodation, such as glamping.
Overall, the new year means plenty of new opportunities for the glamping community. And with 2020 in the rearview mirror, tourism businesses can start looking ahead at how these new travel trends might impact them, and ultimately help them take their operations forward.