Explorers, storytellers, travel guides – travel editors wear many different hats. And this year at the 2016 PURE Press Roundtable they added ‘fortune teller’ to that list, as we took the opportunity to probe a few of our press members on their predictions for the future of experiential travel.
Click play on the video below to get the inside track from Porter’s Travel Director, Catherine Fairweather; or read on to get the extended insights and download the full report.
TRAVEL TREND #2: SAFE HAVENS
“What I’ve noticed in the last year in this politically unstable world we’re living in is a desire to go to places which are considered ‘safe havens’; so I think there’s a huge rise in popularity for the Scandinavian regions, for Nordic countries, for Alaska – places which are remote, pristine, safe, away from the chaos of the rest of the world, the news bulletins.”
– Catherine Fairweather, Travel Director at Porter
As the world becomes an increasingly bewildering place to be, perhaps it’s no surprise that travel is fast becoming a pursuit of peace. With a cacophony of bleak reports blaring from various news mediums daily, our press influencers are forecasting a trend of travellers seeking safe havens – a place to escape, both physically and mentally, the traumas of the modern world.
As some destinations close down in the wake of natural disasters, political unrest or incidents of violence, and many others suffer from the media backlash following isolated or related incidents, one positive outcome is that previously obscure regions are coming into the spotlight. “Travellers want to go to places that are straightforward and safe, like the Arctic – these simple and quiet environments are not available in a lot of countries; it’s an escape”, says freelance travel writer Debbie Pappyn.
For some, visiting a remote destination is enough to make them feel more secure, while others prefer to figuratively distance themselves from perceived threat. Porter’s Travel Director, Catherine Fairweather, highlights the continuing rise of spa and wellness retreats – the latter being the operative word in this case. In fact, so strong is the need to ‘retreat’ among travellers that the trend has permeated the majority of the industry – as Arnie Weissmann of Travel Weekly says, “You can’t have anything resembling a resort without a spa.”
But safe havens aren’t limited to spas and snowy wildernesses. Brands looking to tap into this emerging trend should consider what the two have in common: both offer privacy, little noise, with few and carefully selected stimulus. Indoor gardens, scent rooms, private tree houses, meditation spaces, a well-stocked library – the potential for creating spaces where travellers feel safe and harmonious is limited only by imagination.
Katie Palmer is Senior Creative Executive for Beyond Luxury Media.