Predicting 2018 Travel Experiences According to Forbes: 2016 & 2017

Sherise Varga
Apr 11, 2018 · 4 min read

In this era of next generation travelers — millennials are driven by a desire for authentic experiences, FOMO, and traveling as a lifestyle as opposed to luxury.

“The younger generation’s insatiable appetite for global enlightenment and wanderlust is beginning to rival the 60% of seniors who set their sights on travel following retirement in the eyes of travel and hospitality marketers.”

Topdeck Travel, a popular group travel program for 18–30 somethings, surveyed 31,000 people from 134 different countries and found 88% traveled overseas between 1–3 times a year, and 30% traveled solo. The majority of this group traveled to Europe, North America, and Australia/New Zealand.

We can see a shift in ideals for the younger generation! No longer are they seeking a party-only vacation but instead want a full culturally immersive trip, in which they do, see, and eat like the locals.

In fact, 86% of these young travelers rated experiencing a new culture as vital to their travel plans along with eating local and authentic cuisine. When asked about partying, only 44% said this was a determining factor, just a little bit above shopping at 28%. The younger generation of travelers are hungry for new experiences, whether through food, historical sites, or just walking amongst the local people.

How Did 2017 Create Growth in Travel?

The desire to live like the locals is also accompanied by a desire to travel sustainable. This trend in travel has given rise to a new concept for sustainable tourism.

Sustainable tourism is not only defined as creating a green footprint but also as a way to sustain culture and heritage in the places they visit. Most are seeking to be self-aware and inspired through a life changing experience in order to come back to their life feeling transformed. There is more desire for discovery and exploration over traveling to populated touristy destinations.

This younger generation craves an experience that changes their perspective on life and revitalizes them for their day to day life. The United Nations declared 2017 the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development which is a reflection of the millennial travel experiences.

This new way of traveling has the potential to increase social and economic support through the exploration of city outskirts, rural townships, and untouched villages that were previously eschewed for more tourist friendly locations.

What Travel Trends are Emerging in 2018?

2018 is predicted to see a shift to domestic exploration coupled with a work/life balance. According to a Hipmunk survey, 72% of millennials reported that they traveled more in 2016, with 38% of millennials already traveling for business, of that 55% say they extend business trips for extra leisure time.

These increases in personal travel are on par with what experts think is a shift in younger generations’ identity. Gone are the work till you drop mentalities, instead the younger generation seeks to live and travel now — not just in retirement.

We are seeing the importance of balancing hectic jobs with leisure time.

It will not come as a surprise for the rising trend to be more millennials seeking career paths that include traveling for work. Now that the older millennials have had the thrill of exploration, we feel these next few years more young adults will desire a balanced work life that accommodates travel into yearly business, weekends, and vacations.

Right now we have the advantage — an entrepreneur spirited nation and advances in technology present opportunities to work remote where exploration is more accessible.

Lots of millennials seek “startup” cultures that give “work/life” balance comparative to UK, EU, Australia/NZ countries benefit. According to MMGY, “Domestic vacations now make up 85 percent of American vacations.

There were 13.9 million more vacations taken within the U.S. compared to outside the country. 79% of millennial travelers’ vacations were to domestic destinations in 2016; the same applies to 85% of Gen Xers, 90 percent of baby boomers, and 88 percent of mature travelers.”

The desire to mix business with pleasure by way of venturing in local exploration will be the movement of all young people in 2018, but often times it’s difficult to find what the locals do… So let us help you discover LOCALi!




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Sherise Varga

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Locali bridges the gap between like minded travelers and exploring each city’s gem, providing the ultimate local experience.