Top travel trends for 2014
- Travellers will rely more on technology
- Less human contact but more social snaps
- Evolution of travel insurance industry: what travellers need to know
March 7, 2014 – As the summer holidays fade into a distant memory, thoughts for many Australians are turning towards the next holidays and short break. But what does 2014 hold for holidaymakers?
One of Australia’s biggest comparison websites finder.com.au/travel-insurance has forecast its Top Travel Trends for the year.
Gadgets which remind you to reapply sunscreen on vacation and multigenerational trips are just some of the travel trends expected for the year ahead.
Michelle Hutchison, Spokesperson at finder.com.au/travelinsurance, said the overriding trend for 2014 is the impact of mobile devices.
"Technology is influencing every travel decision now," she said.
"Every business in the travel industry needs to be channeling their energy into designing products and services to reach mobile consumers or they will be left behind."
Mrs Hutchison said social media was a key driver in some of the trends listed below.
"People want experiences that are Instagram-worthy. Social media has created a generation of travellers who expect more from their holiday."
Top Travel Trends for 2014:
1. Tech travel
Holidaying with gadgets will be more popular than ever in 2014. Everything from a bracelet (June by Netatmo) which measures the local sun intensity and reminds you to reapply sunscreen; to ski goggles embedded with a HD camera that let you live stream footage, are being released aimed at the travel market.
2. The silent traveller
The digital age is giving rise to a new kind of traveller who requires far less human interaction. Adept at using all available online and mobile tools to research holidays, take out insurance, make bookings and sightsee. These new travellers shun human contact, preferring apps and other tools to forge their own way.
3. Experiences wanted
There will be a rush for ‘experiences’ which can be captured and uploaded on social media platforms. Unable to ‘unplug’ for the holidays these Instagram and Facebook obsessed travellers will hunt for interactive experiences that they can post their pictures.
4. Online discounts
Travellers will be more influenced by discounts and promotions when booking travel. A spike in the use of promo codes is being witnessed on sites such as www.finder.com.au/deals. Companies including Expedia and Hotels.com currently have promo codes offered on this site.
5. Free internet
Free wifi access is becoming almost as important as the number of bedrooms when booking accommodation. With the proliferation of mobile devices and consumers’ reliance on mobile technology, extra charges for mobile internet can be a big turn off for travellers. Some are now planning their itinerary based on free hotspots.
6. VIP Experience
Goodbye travellers’ cheques, hello travel cards – set to become the number one method of payment for travellers needing more than one currency. A few years ago there were just two on the market and now every major bank, airline and foreign currency company is getting in on the action, including OFX, MasterCard Multi Currency Cash Passport and one of the latest to hit the market is Qantas Card with Qantas Cash, according to finder.com.au/travel-money.
7. Multi-generational travel
Multi-generational family holidays are expected to rise. The older that baby boomers get, the more family travel they’re doing, usually planned around milestone events. This trend is based on making memories and value for money.
8. Medical tourism
There is a growing popularity for medical travel. finder.com.au’s study of Google search trends revealed there is a lot of interest in overseas plastic surgery from Australians. Australians searching for breast implants in Thailand has doubled in the past 12 months. U.S. firms have even started offering medical travel insurance to Australians, hoping to cash in on a new wave of medical tourists from down under.
￼9. OnDemand options
On-demand bookings are rising fast. Thanks to mobile devices and last minute websites a growing number of travellers will book travel related activities after they’ve left home. Line-jumping privileges at amusement parks and hotels are starting to be offered in an age of impatience. People will pay a premium for speed and greater convenience.
10. Destination unknown
Far-flung parts of the world will become more appealing. Destinations that bring with them opportunity for immersion in local cultures and real bragging rights. Countries once the preserve of the more hardened traveller will be on the top of some lists. Urban learning experiences is the new buzz phrase in the industry.
Travel insurance industry evolves
Mrs Hutchison said the travel insurance sector had started to respond to the emerging trends but would need to continue to evolve in order to keep up.
"Insurers are seeing a rise in multi-generational family travel and kids 17 and under can be added for no additional cost when travelling with grandparents on certain policies.
"Some insurers are increasing their limits on electronic devices and other personal items so that if that flash new device is broken on holidays, you’re covered."
She urged holidaymakers to compare travel insurance online and find a cover which suited their intended type of getaway.
For further information
The information in this release is accurate as of the date published, but rates, fees and other product features may have changed. Please see updated product information on finder.com.au's review pages for the current correct values.
More than 3 million Australians turn to finder.com.au every month to save money, time and make important life choices. We compare virtually everything from credit cards, phone plans, health insurance, travel deals and much more.
Our free service is 100% independently-owned by two Australians: Fred Schebesta and Frank Restuccia. Since launching in 2006, we’ve helped our users make more than 17 million decisions.
We continue to expand and launch around the globe, and now operate in the United States and United Kingdom. For further information visit www.finder.com.au.