The Herman Trend Alert
September 20, 2017
Experience Tourism into the Future
Earlier this month, our author, Joyce, attended a conference in France on the Future of Tourism. Ostensibly focusing on 2050, Les Entretiens de Vixouze drew people from around the world to look at various aspects tourism. Over the course of the next several months, we will offer insights from that conference. This Herman Trend Alert is the first of these topics.
One the speakers at the conference Les Entretiens de Vixouze [The Interviews of Vixouze] was the consultant Armelle Solelhac, CEO, SWiTCH. After her presentation, we caught up with her to discuss her visions for the future.
Personal space will be the new paradigm
Focusing on the future of resort tourism, Solelhac believes that a new paradigm is emerging. Fueled by the increasing world population, tourism will be based on the amount of personal space people will have. For their vacations, people who can afford it will look for more space. The trend will particularly be reflected in seaside resorts, in the next 20 to 30 years, where niche tourism for the elite will offer unique opportunities to disconnect as much as they want.
People will be looking for as little friction (read "stress") as possible in their lives when they are on vacation in resorts, as well as when they are living in cities. Hotels and resorts can reduce that friction and enhance the experiences by engineering many aspects of the space, including the flow of people, the openness of the space, and conversation areas. (The newly renovated Hyatt at SFO is a great example of the latter.)
Using technology to reduce friction
New technologies like RFD-based bracelets allow visitors at the Val-d'Isere ski resort in France to play on the slopes stress-free. If you have ever skied you know how annoying it is to pay for items, like lift tickets and food. Usually the credit card or cash is buried in a pocket and you must remove everything else to get to it.
Carnival's Ocean Medallion will take this to the next level
Debuting in November on the Princess Cruise Line will be Carnival's Ocean Medallion. This product will take this stress-free concept up several levels. Keeping track of personal preferences and much more, the new wearable technology will allow for instant purchasing in the store, as well as review of travelers' photographs without having to take hours to scan all the passenger pictures on the ship. Keeping track of passenger preferences, the new hyper customer-centric system will also open stateroom doors and even suggest appropriate activities. Look for a subsequent Herman Trend Alert focusing exclusively on this customer experience breakthrough.
We will also see an increasing demand for ecological and natural tourism, travel that supports rather than damages the environment.
Solelhac is seeing controlled environments that seem risky, but in fact, are not. She sees heightened experiences that could be risky, but because they are in controlled environments are not. Guests enjoy the enhanced adventures, while staying safe.
Hyperactive versus laid-back travel
Finally, Solelhac believes we will have two types of travel: very active and very inactive. We will see the vacations where we will be hiking and climbing and clubbing from early morning until late at night versus the totally unscheduled, no deadlines types of vacations where people will have nothing to do, but sit under a palm tree and read or sleep all day.
The developments you may expect in tourism
In the future, vacationers will be able to enjoy totally customized travel experiences that will provide the desired amount of activity and thrills with the precise level of excitement the traveler is looking for. There is no reason you won't be able to have it your way!
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