Leisure travel has gained popularity in recent years, with the new breed of travelers taking it a step further. Not only are intrepid travelers visiting all the most popular tourist hot spots, they are also opting for more secluded, lesser known locations offering authentic experiences that are “off the beaten track”.
Whilst travelers have always had the world at their fingertips, travel companies are tailoring their packages to be increasingly more targeted to specific themes and/or types of travelers and less focused on the destination as the main selling point. Now, travelers can choose between options of a wellness tour where relaxation and rejuvenation is key, or an adventure tour, where thrill-seeking and exploration take first preference.
In response to these changes, the industry as a whole has been forced to up its game in order to remain competitive, and this has led to the skyrocketing popularity of luxury travel as a concept for engaging new travelers.
The 5 C’s of Luxury Travel
Luxury travel is the definition of comfort and its key tenet is the delivery of top quality services, without any hassle or stress. In practice, luxury travel promotes an elevated experience that requires minimum effort from the guest and provides the maximum amount of premium amenities.
The 5 C’s of Luxury Travel: Culture, Cuisine, Community, Content and Customization. While not new, these core elements have received a heightened focus in recent months as travelers have become more discerning and more focused on the quality of their experiences.
Studies have shown that 27% of US international travelers view themselves as “sophisticated explorers” who say their primary motivation for travel is their desire to experience the traditions and foreign cultures of the places they visit.
At one time, luxury travelers were satisfied with simply flying to a holiday destination and spending the entirety of their trip at their 5 star hotel; rarely venturing out or immersing themselves within the destination they had visited. Today, this is not the case, with travelers showing more interest in the culture and traditions of the regions they travel to and an increased desire to learn and explore the area while on vacation.
Today’s travelers value storytelling, performance arts, history, culture and heritage above all else and luxury travel products, which offer these experiences, are quickly gaining in popularity.
“Travelers looking for a luxury trip want their dreams to become reality. They look for something unique, above their expectations with superb service where their needs and wants are fulfilled. This includes exclusivity, privacy and everything from relaxation to adventure, with pampering and extras.”
Carrie McDougall,President,Cultural Crossroads
In addition to a healthy dose of culture and heritage, one of the things that most travelers can agree on is that in order to truly experience a destination, you have to be willing to travel with your taste buds!
However, as the everyday traveler seeks out cuisine indigenous to the region, the luxury traveler takes it to the next level and seeks out a fully-imagined, culinary experience. Whether by taking a local cooking class while on vacation, embarking on a journey with a culinary theme, visiting wine farms in order to sample the highest quality wines, or traveling the world in order to dine at the top restaurants, culinary experiences are at the top of the list for most luxury travelers.
And while culinary tours can be quite pricey, for those travelers looking to elevate their travels, an epicurean adventure is hard to beat.
Although luxury travel packages pride themselves on giving their travelers an exclusive experience, even sophisticated explorers still seek a sense of community.
Upmarket resorts and other luxury travel providers are aware of this need, and always plan itineraries with exclusivity and community in mind. Community focused itineraries include opportunities to mingle with fellow travelers in an intimate and private setting that fosters camaraderie and kingship amongst the group. In these examples, group tours are kept small to create intimacy and hosts or guides are employed to ensure that all guests receive the level of attention they deserve.
“Luxury is defined by attention to detail, meticulous workmanship, sumptuous atmosphere and discerning good taste.”
Robert Mackasek, CEO, Valera Global
Of all the features of luxury travel, perhaps the most relevant is customization.
High-end travel companies employ experts who are trained to deliver the highest level of service to their guests. Travel advisors in this sector are tasked with the complete personalization of each journey, tailoring each request to account for the specific requests of the guests in their care.
Within these high-end travel spaces, travelers are engaged throughout each step of the journey’s design and afforded the option for complete exclusivity throughout. Travel advisors serving the luxury travel market must remain flexible, knowledgeable and attentive of all the needs, wants and desires of their guests in order to remain competitive in the luxury travel landscape.
Interested in customizing your own Journey? Click here.
Is Luxury Travel For Everyone?
The ability to customize and create exclusivity for yourself and your travel party, make luxury travel an appealing avenue for many current world travelers. And while it might take a bit longer to save up for a luxury travel experience, those who do, report that the perks are worth every penny!
Interested in a luxury travel experience? Click here to view our list of Curated Journey’s.