Getting the most value from your travel means doing more than just staying longer and adding destinations. Liz Lunnon, head of product at Discover the World, said she’s seeing people wanting to “pack more experiences and activities”. Trailfinders report similar trends and increased interest in incorporating specific experiences, such as seeing the Northern Lights; luxury rail travel, such as the Orient Express to Venice or the Rocky Mountaineer in Canada; and African safari – especially Kenya , Tanzania and Botswana. Luxury operator Scott Dunn has also seen strong growth in the space, with demand for its three-week “bucket list” adventures up 80% since the start of the pandemic.
One lower-cost aspect of this trend is the growing demand for cultural excursions — from wine tasting to art appreciation, from battlefield tours to bird watching — as part of more mainstream vacations. Tui, which offers some 25,000 day trips and experiences in 115 countries, says each customer books an average of two of them per vacation, a number expected to increase by 2023. Meanwhile, Expedia brand president Jon Gieselman has seen a surge in travel to “culturally rich” cities with strong arts offerings and cultural celebrations. Expedia lists Edinburgh, Lisbon, Tokyo, Dublin and Sydney as the top five destinations with the largest increases.