As we patiently wait to reconnect to the joy of travel, there is no better time to start planning our next holiday of a lifetime. For the past year, we have been dreaming of international destinations and far-flung adventures, discovering majestic landscapes, reconnecting with cultures and meeting new people. From transformational travel to retracing our heritage and ancestry steps, there are many ways in which we will get back to our love for exploring and there is no better time to action those wanderlust dreams.
When we do get the opportunity to explore again, the ways in which we do so may be different and more thoughtfully planned. Our friends at Trafalgar, the world’s leading and most awarded travel brand dedicated to helping guests fulfil their travel dreams, are here to assist.
To help ease back into our love for travel the brand has recently implemented a three step COVID-19 travel protocol approach, developed in alignment with the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) to produce their enhanced on-trip standards assuring the well-being and happiness of guests. The brand has also introduced a Flexible and Risk-Free Policy to give travellers peace of mind if they would like to change their plans up until 30 days before their departure.
As travellers look forward to their first trip in the coming months, here are the travel predictions for the year ahead from Trafalgar:
01. Outdoor adventures
After spending so much time indoors during lockdowns, now more than ever, travellers are craving wide-open spaces and breathtaking landscapes. The healing power of nature is calling, and outdoor adventures are a trending travel style. Travellers are keen to escape to serene surroundings, reconnect with nature and get more active in some of the world’s most beautiful places. From soaking in the restorative geothermal seawaters of Iceland’s Blue Lagoon to gazing at the Northern Lights in Finland, the outdoors offers so much to discover.
Suggested Itinerary: 9-day Scandinavian Northern Lights
02. Multi-generational adventures
Travellers are eager to make up for lost time with friends and family and what better way to do so than checking off some bucket list destinations while at it? Multi-generational family travel or reunion travel is another trending travel style Trafalgar predicts will be tremendously popular throughout 2021. After having to miss or postpone numerous weddings, anniversaries, birthdays and other occasions, forming a ‘travel bubble’ exclusively with loved ones is a great way to ease back into the love of travel.
Travellers can rediscover the joy of travel on Trafalgar’s family-friendly adventures. From staying at a medieval castle in the United Kingdom or observing wildlife at an ecological park in Costa Rica, there are experiences to be had around the world to excite members of the entire family.
Suggested Itinerary: 8-day Monkeys, Jungles and Volcanoes
03. Slow travel
As the world begins to open back up, slow travel is another top travel style Trafalgar predicts for the year ahead. With lots of time to pause and reflect and with a shift to a more relaxed style in a post COVID-19 world, when the time is right to do so, extended and longer international travel adventures will be a must. With everyone’s wanderlust at an all-time high, longer and more immersive travel adventures (more than one or two weeks) will be ideal for travellers to dive deep into the location being explored and fully connect with the culture, history and region at a slower pace.
Suggested Itinerary: 31-day European Supreme
04. Transformational travel
Travelling with an impact and more sustainably has been an important travel trend over the past few years and will become an even more crucial style of travel in 2021 and beyond. Travellers have witnessed the impact COVID-19 has had on the travel and tourism industry worldwide, and now more than ever, local businesses need our support.
In the years ahead, Trafalgar predicts travellers will be seeking travel adventures that not only support local economies but where their efforts can personally give back to the community too and make travel matter. A top experience includes a visit to the Laboratorio Giuditta Brozzetti, one of the few remaining traditional frame hand weaving workshops in Italy. When travelling with Trafalgar, and in partnership with its not-for-profit, The TreadRight Foundation, guests will have the opportunity to discover the history of Italian hand-weaving during a private demonstration and see firsthand how their visit helps preserve this traditional art form for generations to come.
Suggested Itinerary: 11-day Italy Bellissimo
05. Culinary travel
During months of lockdown, travellers have been cooped up in their homes or in one city and had to resort to their own cooking skills or local restaurants to satisfy those international flavour cravings. Now, guests are eager to put their newfound culinary skills to the test while taking part in local foodie experiences in the destinations at the top of their travel lists. In the year ahead, Trafalgar predicts stomachs (over hearts) will lead the way and travellers will be craving local and fresh delicacies helping to navigate their next travel adventure. From sourcing fresh ingredients while exploring a market in Bangkok and learning the secrets of a Thai cooking class from an expert chef, there is no better way to please your culinary needs than from the local source.
Suggested Itinerary: 11-day Treasures of Thailand
06. Staying local
One of the most popular travel trends for 2021 that Trafalgar predicts is staying local and travelling in one’s backyard. With an itch to pack your suitcase and get out to see the world, domestic travel offers the perfect way to rediscover one’s love for travel while also supporting local economies and businesses. With so many incredible sights to see throughout Canada, there is no better opportunity to explore our homelands than now.
Suggested Itinerary: 10-day Enchanting Canadian Maritimes
07. Experiencing bucket list destinations
With travel dreams and adventures on pause this past year, 2021 will see the rise of crossing off true bucket list trips. Having realized that access to travel can never be taken for granted, when the time is right, travellers will not be holding back. From enjoying a private safari game drive in Kruger National Park looking for the magnificent ‘Big 5’ or discovering as many US National Parks as possible, this year, Trafalgar guarantees to see travel wish lists come to life.
Suggested Itinerary: 15-day Best of South Africa
Retracing heritage and ancestry steps
The return of heritage or ancestry travel is another trend not going anywhere in 2021 and beyond. Pre COVID-19, travellers were looking to escape to the places, people, history, food and cultures that their ancestors connected to and this enriching life experience will continue to take part in heritage trips in the years ahead. Whether it is uncovering your family story in a bustling city in India or diving deep into a quaint farming village in Ireland, Trafalgar is there for travellers every step of the way on their discovery journey.
Suggested Itinerary: 10-day Britain and Ireland Highlights
09. One-of-a-kind travel experiences
With ample time in lockdown to let our minds be captivated through the pages of travel novels, televisions shows or movies, 2021 will see one-of-a-kind travel experiences being fulfilled as our wildest dreams. From the beautiful cities, landscapes and cultures that have inspired our next travel destinations, now is the time to re-live these moments and unique experiences. From sipping on a glass of delicious Burgundy wine in eastern France or experiencing firsthand insights into Māori culture in New Zealand, human connection and once-in-a-lifetime travel experiences will be seen.
Suggested Itinerary: 15-day New Zealand Uncovered
10. Train Travel
Rail-based travel across the globe is another top trend to be seen throughout the year as we welcome the return of travel. Travellers are looking for hassle-free ways to get around and train travel offers some of the world’s most beautiful scenery to do so. Trafalgar shares that this is a re-emerging travel style which may not have been considered to explore top travel destinations such as Italy, Scotland or Switzerland by most travellers in the past. But, with social distancing and hassle-free travel top of mind for guests, this will be a popular style to welcome the return of travel.
Suggested Itinerary: 8-day Contrasts of Switzerland