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TRAVEL TRENDS FOR 2024

In 2022, the world collectively dusted off their passports and slowly started catching flights in between figuring out COVID travel restrictions.

In 2023, the bulk of travel bans were lifted, mandatory vaccines became a thing of the past, and travelers took the skies, roads, and seas like never before – all to make up for three years of lost time and a long list of experiences to cross off.

That brings us to 2024.

People are prioritizing travel and new experiences more than ever. We’re taking advantage of remote work to extend vacations without dipping into PTO, opting in for off-the-beaten-path destinations, and indulging in our love of food in new and exciting places.

These are 5 of the biggest travel trends in 2024!

The Biggest Travel Trends for 2024

What exactly will travel look like in 2024? Let’s unpack the trends:

 1. Coolcationing

What is “coolcationing”?

It’s swapping out those beach towels and palm trees for puffer jackets and cool climates.

With 2023 being the hottest year on record, it makes sense that travelers are trying to escape the heat instead of chasing the sun in 2024.

In a survey from Virtuoso, 82% of travelers are considering destinations like Finland or Scotland over hotspots like the south of France. Other trending cool spots are Iceland, Antarctica cruises, Canada, and Alaska.

And another bonus?

These cooler destinations, especially the ones in Scandinavia and the Baltics, are less crowded, come with adventure activities for the whole family, and have a cheaper price tag (depending on the destination).

2. Peak is Out. Shoulder Season is In.

Summer in Europe is pure chaos.

Open up Instagram, and it feels like absolutely everyone you know is posting pics from Paris, Lisbon, and Barcelona.

But in 2023, an emerging trend began to pick up steam.

Instead of booking trips over the peak summer months (June to August), there is a 61% increase in shoulder season bookings for Western Europe.

Original Travel is seeing similar trends. When comparing reservations in 2023 to 2019, there is a 33% increase for March to May and a 58% increase for September to November.

The reason?

As I mentioned, “coolcationing” is a driving force with many travelers seeking cooler temperatures. But traveling during the shoulder season has plenty of other advantages, like avoiding crowds, better hotel deals, and cheaper flights.

3. Foodie Travel

Feeling peckish? 

Welcome to the club!

Another huge travel trend for 2024 is foodie travel. According to Virtuoso, there has been a 70% increase in travelers booking trips with a food focus.

But what’s on the menu?

Travelers want more than a sit-down meal in a swanky restaurant. 

They want:

What are the top foodie destinations for 2024?

According to TripAdvisor, hungry travelers are planning trips to:

4. The Rise of Off-the-Beaten-Path Destinations 

The problem with Paris and Rome? Too many people.

The lines are never-ending. The streets are bursting.

It’s enough to make you book a vacation to recover from your vacation.

A lot of destinations are also suffering from the consequences of over-tourism, and travelers are keen to ditch the crowds and explore lesser-known gems in 2024.

Georgia and the Baltics are leading the demand, with sales to these destinations up by over 30%, according to Contiki.

Not only are these off-the-beaten-track destinations less crowded, but they come with heaps of benefits like:

 5. Longer Stays

Remember how cheap flights were pre-COVID?

Well, if you’ve been waiting for the industry to return to “normal,” it doesn’t look like that’s happening anytime soon.

But what you can do is book longer stays to make the hefty prices worth it.

And that’s one of the biggest travel trends in 2024.

The reason?

Remote work is a major catalyst. With more people able to work and travel, it creates the perfect environment to travel slowly and tick multiple bucket-list countries off at once.

This also blends into another rising travel trend, “bleisure” (business + leisure). 

You get to explore the world without tucking into your PTO.

It’s a win-win.

Ready, Get Set, Start Planning!

Which of these 2024 travel trends are on your radar? 

Are you planning a few “bleisure” trips to stretch your PTO? Is your family swapping out the Bahamas for Norway?

Let me know in the comments below!