Wanderlust 2019: From sports tourism to active tourism here are 2019’s travel trends

Cash Rich-Time Poor Indians made every effort to achieve their bucket list of travel goals through 2019,” says Rajeev Kale, President & Country Head – Holiday, MICE, Visa, Thomas Cook (India) Ltd.

Today’s travellers are no longer limiting themselves to traditional cookie-cutter holiday packages. Yeh dil maange more, is their mantra and they are going all out to make their hearts sing… with ‘immersive’ experiences.

So, what are travellers enjoying the most?

Shares Shailesh Patil, Director, Kesari, “Cruise holidays are trending big time! From entry to exit, everything is mesmerising. The liner looks and feels like a palace; the staff are warm and cheerful; plus the accommodation, meals and entertainment make a cruise holiday value for money. The dreamy ambience makes this tour most memorable.”

Rajeev Kale pipes in that sports tourism exploded in 2019. He shares, “Cricket has always been a powerful driver and this year, with the twin bonanza of IPL and the World Cup in the UK, we witnessed a strong surge in demand for destinations hosting these events. Additionally, with multiple global sport events like Singapore Grand Prix, Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, French Open and Wimbledon gaining popularity, sports tourism contributed strongly to the tourism sector.”

Reveals Vikram Lalwani, Chief Customer Engagement Officer, Sterling Holidays, “Drive-away, pilgrim and heritage destinations evoked the explorer within the traveller. Based on this, Sterling launched Discoveries & Experiences (D&E) with local curated experiences across its resorts emphasising the heritage, cuisine and natural highlights of the destination.”

“A cooking class in Laos, bungee jumping in New Zealand, river rafting in Hrishikesh, shark cage diving in South Africa… 2019 saw the rise of the experiential travel segment. With the advent of a more connected world, it is easier today to find experiences suited for every taste and budget,” says Neil Patil, Founder & Director, Veena World.

Women on the prowl!

The gals have truly been whooping it up! Eclectic experiences like classic open top car touring along Britain’s coast, glamping set against breath-taking views of the Swiss Alps, unparalleled wine-dine experiences in Melbourne’s Yarra Valley, high-end shopping sojourns with a personal shopper in Paris and Dubai, spa and wellness therapies in Indonesia and Kerala, personalized experiences like learning kickboxing in Thailand and cooking with local chefs in Italy’s Tuscany have been ruling.