The luxury travel trends you need to know about for 2022

The luxury travel trends you need to know about for 2022

From slow travel to bucket-list experiences. Chris Austin, chief sales officer at Explora Journeys, reveals his luxury travel predictions for the year ahead

A luxury cruise represents one of the safest holiday environments available today, arguably safer than the supermarket or a packed bar right now. Most cruise companies, for example, insist that crew and passengers are fully vaccinated and have implemented strict health and safety protocols. Our sister brand, MSC Cruises, pioneered the way in summer 2020 with the industry’s first such protocol which was designed for the wellbeing of passengers, crew and communities that would welcome its ships, and it has the flexibility to adapt to the evolving pandemic ashore.

Our own research at Explora Journeys suggests that today’s luxury travellers want to make up for lost time, reunite with family and friends, seize the day and enjoy unforgettable experiences. Forecasting the future is always tricky, particularly during an ever-changing pandemic, but here are some key luxury cruise travel trends to look out for when planning.

Bucket-list destinations

Guests have said that they are planning to indulge their pent-up wanderlust with a bucket-list experience – having had plenty of time throughout the pandemic to research, and save for, an adventure of a lifetime. Travellers don’t want to just return to tried and tested destinations, they are after a trip that delivers unforgettable experiences. We are already seeing an interest in our inaugural Iceland and Greenland journey, for passengers hoping to catch a glimpse of the spectacular northern lights, and for the hidden gems and off-the-beaten-path destinations in the Caribbean. The last two years have made us realise that, if there are things you are yearning to do in your life, you shouldn’t put it off.

Slow travel

Guests are also moving away from fast and furious checklist-driven travel and embracing unrushed journeys that allow them to fully immerse themselves in a country’s food, culture and people. Here at Explora Journeys, our ships will cater to this trend with a perfect blend of celebrated destinations seen through a different lens and lesser-travelled locations, with authentic experiences, expert insights and deeper immersion into the local culture. Our guests will have the chance to relax, create memories and experience what we refer to as an ‘Ocean State of Mind’ – they can expect to return home feeling exhilarated, not exhausted.

Sustainability

As travellers have become increasingly conscious of the impact their travel has on the places and the local communities they visit, demand for responsible tourism has been rising steadily over the past decade and has been amplified during the pandemic. Luxury is not to be compromised, however people want to know they are making a difference.

Covid-19 gave us a chance to pause and understand what really matters on a deeper, emotional level. As a brand born from 300 years of shipping legacy, the ocean is our home and Explora Journeys holds the seas and oceans that sustain our planet in the very highest regard. We will always offer bespoke itineraries that maximise social and economic benefits for local communities.

Ask the experts

From taking tests to completing passenger locator forms, travelling during the Covid era hasn’t been easy. Little wonder, then, that more and more people are booking a luxury cruise and benefitting from expert guidance of travel advisors and the extra protection that comes with a luxury journey at sea.

We’ve received enquiries from people who are new to cruise who, pre-pandemic, would have booked every aspect of their trip themselves but are finding staying abreast of the constantly changing travel rules too stressful. At Explora Journeys, we are focused to protect the business health and longevity of the travel advisor community and we take the responsibility off you and put it on us to make sure you and your clients will experience a once-in-a-lifetime ocean escape.

Explora Journeys (explorajourneys.com) is the new luxury lifestyle cruise brand of the MSC Group. The first of four luxury ships will set sail in 2023, with the remaining ships ready in 2024, 2025, and 2026.

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