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Travellers have changed: G Adventures reveals top 10 travel trends for 2022

As borders reopen after two long years, G Adventures is revealing what Aussie travellers are looking for as the world opens up again. While there is still some uncertainty in terms of requirements for travel in the face of the pandemic, one thing is clearer than ever - travellers have changed. 

As borders reopen after two long years, G Adventures is revealing what Aussie travellers are looking for as the world opens up again. While there is still some uncertainty in terms of requirements for travel in the face of the pandemic, one thing is clearer than ever – travellers have changed. 

Assisted by its panel of avid adventurers, G Adventures has identified the top 10 trends for travelling in 2022, with insights into how people want to travel and where they want to go.

Bruce Poon Tip, founder of G Adventures, says the trends clearly reveal the pandemic has produced a more conscious traveller and has presented operators with a huge opportunity for change.  

“This pandemic has woken travellers up and given them a chance to reflect on how they were travelling before. The data tells us people have become more purposeful and intentional about how and why they are travelling, and where they are going, and that they are recognising the positive impact travel can have on local communities when decisions are made wisely.  

“These trends point towards a seismic shift in travellers’ habits. It only takes a small number of people to make a huge difference, and travellers are finally seeing how smart choices can positively benefit local people, and deliver a richer travel experience at the same time,” says Poon Tip.  

Now borders are open, G Adventures’ top 10 predictions for 2022 travel are as follows: 

1. THE TREND: Community tourism is the solution to responsible travel

Trans Bhutan Trail
Tigers Nest Monastery, Bhutan

According to G Adventures’ latest panel research, close to a third (28 per cent*) of Aussie and Kiwi respondents say they will place more focus on travelling responsibly in 2022.

With the increased focus on community and support of locally-owned businesses fostered during the pandemic, it makes sense that this mindset carries over into international travel plans.

Travellers are looking for adventures that support community tourism, and trails are a great way for tourists to spread wealth through multiple smaller villages. 

THE TRIP: Highlights of the Trans Bhutan Trail 

2. THE TREND: Travellers care most about supporting local people

G Adventures Sale
Egypt. Image: G Adventures

The most important factor for Aussies and Kiwis when they travel is that their money benefits local people, at 68 per cent.

This trend has been intensified by the impact of the pandemic on countries that rely on tourism for their economic survival and came in well ahead of other important considerations such as minimising one’s carbon footprint and/or reducing plastics consumption (both at 15 per cent globally). 

THE TRIP: Highlights of Egypt

3. THE TREND: Travellers will have a bit more cash to splash 

Japan. Image: G Adventures

With staying in spurring a savings boom, 24 per cent of travel-starved Aussies and Kiwis said they had increased their travel budget for their next international holiday, which means their travel dollars are likely to take them on bigger adventures than they might have thought possible before.

THE TRIP: National Geographic Journeys with G Adventures – Iconic Japan 

4. THE TREND: ‘Workations’ increase in popularity 

Costa Rica, Central America
Costa Rica

As the world shifted to remote working, companies realised office confines were no longer required to ensure productivity. Previously the domain of the digital nomad, ‘workations’ have hit the mainstream.

20 per cent of respondents to G Adventures’ most recent survey say they are able to ‘work from anywhere’ – with that number rising to 46 per cent for those aged 18-34.

An increasing number of people plan to combine work with travel in future at 20 per cent, up from 14 per cent in December 2020. 

THE TRIP: Costa Rica: Beaches, Wildlife and Wild Times

5. THE TREND: Hostels will make a big comeback 

Cenote in Merida, Mexico. Image: G Adventures

The need for social connection amongst young travellers is strong with 55 per cent of Aussies and Kiwis aged 18-34 saying they were likely to try a hostel experience following the pandemic, and 50 per cent of those expressing that meeting people to socialise at the hostel, and possibly travel with, is the most important factor when selecting a hostel. 

THE TRIP: Yucatan Adventure: Merida, Tulum & Jungle Swims

6. THE TREND: Travellers want to disconnect from their devices 

Galapagos Seals
Galapagos Seals. Image: G Adventures

Workationers aside, while travellers want to reconnect with people and places, they are desperate to disconnect from the online world while on holiday.

47 per cent of respondents want to take time out from their devices and social media, with 26 per cent saying socialising and meeting new people is their top wellbeing priority when booking their next holiday. 

THE TRIP: GalapagosCentral and East Islands 

7. THE TREND: The staycation is over – travellers want to go further afield

Statue of Mourning Mother, Uzbekistan. Image: G Adventures

The domestic holiday appeal is wearing off as the pandemic rolls on.

Only 17 per cent of respondents said they would prefer to stay closer to home as opposed to heading further afield on their next international holiday, with close to a third – 30 per cent – saying they were less likely to take a ‘staycation’ in 2022.   

THE TRIP: Highlights of Uzbekistan 

8. THE TREND: Lockdown life has led to a desire to be more active 

G Adventures Sale
Yoga. Image: G Adventures

67 per cent of those surveyed want to be physically active on their next holiday and with 63 per cent of travellers polled saying their physical and mental wellbeing is a top consideration when booking a holiday, taking a hike never sounded more appealing. 

THE TRIP: Zion to San Francisco Adventure

9. THE TREND: Travellers are prioritising wellbeing and mental health 

Ubud, Bali

With an overwhelming 93 per cent of people saying travel is important to their wellbeing and mental health, travellers are also looking to take their next holiday in a way that not only helps them to reconnect, but optimises travel as a means of revitalisation, too.

THE TRIP: Wellness Bali

10. THE TREND: Revenge travel is out, reconnection travel is in resizeimage 11 1
Iceland. Image: G Adventures

Consumers are hungry for new experiences and connections. Although the term ‘revenge travel’ – the urge to travel to make up for lost time in lockdown – gained popularity over the course of the pandemic, reconnection travel is the top reason for travelling at 40 per cent, with revenge travel – booking a trip to make up for lost time – coming in at just 16 per cent.

THE TRIP: Trekking Eastern Iceland

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