Solo Travel on the Rise

Solo Travel on the Rise

Given that we’re living in the Selfie Era, is it any surprise that solo travel is on the rise? I keep hearing more and more about this trend—driven by millennials and women, but increasingly popular overall—and I’m convinced that its impact on the industry is growing. A few statistics I’ve come across recently: Roughly one in four U.S. travelers plans to travel alone in 2018, according to a study by MMGY. The US Tour Operators Association says that nearly half (46%) of its members reported a growth in solo travelers in 2017 over the year before. And Google searches for the term “how to travel solo” have risen tenfold since 2008, reaching a peak in January 2018. Solo travelers come in many forms: Some are unmarried, divorced or widowed, while…
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2018 Outlook for Luxury Travel Industry Buoyed by Stronger Economy

2018 Outlook for Luxury Travel Industry Buoyed by Stronger Economy

Top travel management firms express broad optimism in Strategic Vision’s 2018 Pulse of the Industry Survey, despite headwinds from terrorism and other challenges. A strong economy and a desire to experience the world will lead to further growth in the U.S. luxury travel sector in 2018, according to a new survey of top travel management firms. The Pulse of the Industry Survey, conducted in December 2017 by Strategic Vision, reflects even more confidence about the industry than it did last year, despite industry challenges such as terrorism, hurricanes, and Zika virus. “High-end travelers are feeling bullish about the economy, which should lead to another banner year for luxury tourism in 2018,” says Peter J. Bates, President and Founder of Strategic Vision, a global marketing communications firm servicing the luxury travel…
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Take Responsibility – The Importance of Sustainable Tourism

Take Responsibility – The Importance of Sustainable Tourism

Raise your hand if you knew that 2017 was the International Year of Sustainable Tourism. Good for you! Now, how many of you did something about it? It’s understandable if your sustainability efforts took a backseat to this year’s more urgent problems: natural disasters, terrorist threats, disease outbreaks. But sustainability remains one of the greatest long-term challenges faced by the tourism industry. In fact, it underlies all three of the issues I named above, each of which can be tied directly to climate change, globalism, tourism’s impact on communities, and other pieces of the sustainability puzzle. This holiday season, as I reflect on the past 12 months and look at the year ahead, I’ve been thinking about sustainability a lot, and whether the travel industry is doing enough to address…
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What To Do When Disaster Strikes!

What To Do When Disaster Strikes!

Hurricanes, earthquakes, and terrorist attacks. Over the past month, the travel industry has had to react swiftly to get the word about the effects of such natural and man-made disasters. The challenge for hotels, resorts and cities is to ensure they have a strategy in place to clearly communicate with customers, travel agents and tourists who book or visit them. These places need to frequently convey what damage has occurred and when they expect to be back online or cleared for travel. Some might say that a resort seems a frivolous consideration compared to the devastation experienced to homes and businesses from these disasters or attacks. But travel and tourism are virtually the lifeblood of many in the affected regions, so effectively communicating one’s status may mean everything to the…
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The Rise of the Chinese Luxury Traveler

The Rise of the Chinese Luxury Traveler

What’s the impact of the Chinese luxury traveler on the overall luxury travel market? “The Chinese Luxury Traveler 2017” survey by ILTM and Hurun Report Inc., shows how these travelers could have a dramatic effect on the overall luxury travel market worldwide in terms of demand and pricing. What’s the Size of the Market? In 2016, according to a report issued by Ctrip and the China Tourism Research Institute, Chinese tourists made 122 million overseas trips, up 4.3 percent compared with the previous two years. An increasingly larger portion of those travelers are in the luxury category (according to the new ILTM survey), with the number of yuan billionaires hitting 1.34 million last year, up 14.1 percent from the previous year. How Much Do They Spend? The ITLM survey found…
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The Allure of the Celebrity Chef

The Allure of the Celebrity Chef

For a number of years now, top hotels and cruise lines have been forming partnerships with celebrity chefs to boost their culinary offerings. They’ve developed these alliances as a way to turn their hospitality products into true destinations for food lovers, as well as to drive revenues and increase rates. In a straw poll of hospitality providers, we’ve found that the celebrity chef is alive and well, as hotels and cruise lines continue to partner with them. The reason is they still see value in such partnerships, both to their hospitality products and their customers. Value of the Celebrity Chef Tom Kaplan, senior managing partner of Wolfgang Puck Fine Dining Group, which has restaurants at a number of top hotels around the world, including at MGM Resorts in Las Vegas,…
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The Luxury Travel Industry’s Outlook on 2017: Optimistic But a Bit Nervous

The Luxury Travel Industry’s Outlook on 2017: Optimistic But a Bit Nervous

Strategic Vision's 2017 Pulse of the Industry Survey reveals that top travel management firms expect to see growth. But security, political stability, and Zika remain pockets of concern. The U.S. luxury travel industry is predicting a strong year for 2017, citing the resilience of the post-election economy and increased consumer confidence as main factors. But it does expect some areas of softness and concern, particularly around international travel. These are the conclusions of the Pulse of the Industry Survey conducted this February by Strategic Vision, a global marketing communications firm servicing the luxury travel and lifestyle industries. Survey respondents, which include senior executives of the nation's leading luxury travel management firms, bridging the leisure, corporate and meetings & incentives sectors, are largely optimistic about their clients' 2017 travel sentiments. "The…
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Highly Affluent Travelers – An Update

What do highly affluent travelers really want in terms of vacation travel? Research firm YouGov asked that question in a recent poll of such travelers (defined as those with household incomes over $350,000), and the results are key to understanding the new mindset for luxury travel. Here are a few key findings on this valuable survey that I thought were highly relevant to the travel market, focusing on what these highest-end travelers value in a hotel or resort experience and how they use travel advisors. Who are Highly Affluent Travelers? YouGov’s survey can create a number of consumer breakouts, but for today we are talking about highly affluent travelers split into two groups: The first group called Extraordinary Travelers, who have taken a private jet vacation (hence the term “extraordinary”)…
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Our New Client Can Help Grow Your Brand

Peter J. Bates, CTC President January 13th, 2017 Dear Colleague Happy New Year! We have been passionate about travel, hospitality and publishing since we created Strategic Vision eighteen years ago. We share this passion with our amazing clients who day in and day out create experiences and make lasting memories – whether our clients are welcoming guests to their island, creating dreams through their content or making these dreams a reality in their amazing hotels throughout the world. We are proud of our work in growing luxury brands in a constantly evolving marketplace. Recently, we have been retained by SK+G, a firm that shares our passion for hospitality and tourism. We have a common mission, "To make our clients' brands the most coveted among their customers, guests and clients." SK+G has…
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What’s Trending in the Luxury Travel Market

As 2016 draws to a close, I find myself reflecting on changes we have seen in the luxury travel sector this year, and more importantly what new developments we might anticipate in 2017.  With that in mind I wanted to look at a few developing trends that I believe we all need to take into consideration as we consider the short-term future of the luxury travel market. I’ve selected six trends from two market research firms on the future of travel, including “2016 Future of Luxury Travel Report” by Resonance, and “The Future of Travel” by Qubit. Here’s a summary of those trends, as well as my thoughts on each of them. Travel as Transformational Resonance’s survey finds luxury travelers are seeking transformational experiences that allow them to learn new…
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