2020 Travel Trends

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Even if you don’t follow news and current affairs often, you’ll have noticed one thing. The travel landscape is changing, and so is what we want out of our holidays. These days, issues such as climate change and political events like Brexit are hot topics. They also have a profound effect on travel and tourism.


So, with those thoughts in mind, what travel trends are we likely to expect or see in the year ahead? As you know, anything can happen in a year. But, here’s a glimpse into what we are likely to see in 2020 when it comes to travel trends.



The issue of climate change is not a recent one. It’s been a problem for a very long time, and many of us have done little about it. Until now, that is.


Today, more of us each day are getting inspired to tackle the issue of climate change. We are constantly looking at ways to reduce our carbon footprint. And we all want to prevent an environmental catastrophe from developing.


One of the things that increasing numbers of people are doing each day is look at how we holiday. There is no denying that climate change has started the development of ecotourism. It’s set to be on trend for 2020.


But, what exactly is ecotourism? In a nutshell, many people are seeking holidays closer to home. We want to reduce our carbon emissions when it comes to transport. As you know, airplanes are one of the biggest contributors to the problem.


The idea of carbon-neutral flights is likely to become reality in the future. For now, though, it’s just wishful thinking. So, the best thing to do is simply cut down on our travel CO2 emissions and help the environment.


Ecotourism is likely to get more widespread as time goes on. It’s also likely we will see a shift in the top holiday destinations. More of us will be looking for package holiday deals within the UK, for example.


Thus, the demand for more eco-friendly tourism options will undoubtedly grow in 2020.



Cashless payments

There was once an era where we’d walk around with lots of foreign cash in our wallets and purses. We would have also carried an array of travellers cheques, ready to cash in at the nearest official agent.


Today, though, is a different story. Some people may tell you that cash is still king, and in some parts of the world that might be true. However, for most of the world, there has been a growing shift in the way that we pay for things abroad.


Cash is seldom a convenient payment option. Plus, it’s certainly not a safe and secure one either! These days, there is a growing trend on using cashless payment options.


There is a variety of prepaid debit cards that we can safely use on our travels. With that in mind, some enterprising people have even come up with cards dedicated to travellers. For example, we have the Revolut card at our disposal.


In case you weren’t aware, Revolut is a type of prepaid debit card that can be used to pay in foreign currencies. What’s more, the exchange rates are often better than one’s own bank rates!


Another interesting observation about cashless payments is the rising use of “virtual” cards. In a nutshell, these are prepaid Visa or Mastercard debit cards. But, the only difference is they are for electronic use only. That means you can only use them for online purchases.


More of us each day are using virtual cards as payment methods. Especially when it comes to booking flights, accommodation, and transfers.


Virtual debit cards are safe because there is nothing to physically steal. And setting up new accounts or virtual cards takes a matter of minutes. There is no waiting around for cards to get sent out in the post. You can use such payment methods instantly.


Another observation to make about the rise of cashless payments is that more service providers are starting to accept card payments. For instance, many taxis can take card payments using card readers and mobile terminals. Of course, there is also the likes of Uber and Lyft where you can prepay your journey. 


Photo Credit: www.theverge.com


Holidays are becoming travel experiences

One of the exciting travel trends for 2020 is how we are seeing a move from ordinary holidays. They are shifting towards travel experiences!


Growing numbers of tourists are seeking a more fulfilling time on their travels. Gone are the days where we’d fly off to sunnier climes and spend all day baking ourselves on a sun lounger.


Instead, more of us wants to experience the local culture, and understand the issues facing those people. For a long time, the travel industry has used the idea of “paradise” as propaganda to entice us.


Nowadays, people want to learn more about the world around them. They want to help improve the planet for everyone (which ties in with ecotourism). In essence, they want to be the change.


When we talk about travel experiences, we aren’t just speaking about ecotourism. We want to have productive holidays, and take part in the things that local people do. We also wish to learn new skills, such as yoga, painting, or even farming!


Sure, the traditional idea of a holiday isn’t going to fizzle out and die. What will happen is that we’ll see the definition of holidays evolving in 2020 and beyond.



Personalised itineraries

One final but major trend we’re going to see developing in 2020 is the use of personalised itineraries. Smartphone apps will make more use of location-based services and AI (artificial intelligence). Also, we will see more ways to interact with the places we visit.


For example, augmented reality will have a bigger role to play in the apps we use. They might overlay street directions to help us navigate to places. And they will also assist with translating text on signs, menus, posters, and so forth.


In 2020, we are also likely to see AI create optimised itineraries for us. We’ll know precisely when to leave if we’re to catch our connecting flights on time, for example!




Andy Chapman

Andy Chapman

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