After 2020 wreaked havoc on most people’s plans, including those regarding travel, we have all taken some time for ourselves to figure out what we want in life. We are deciding on new priorities and some of them also concern the way we travel. With a global pandemic, we have all started taking our health more seriously, which is why it also plays a vital role in finding our next vacation spot. While wellness tourism was thriving even before the planet found itself in this situation, traveling with the goal of maintaining or improving one’s wellbeing is expected to only grow once the world gets back to normal.
Even though the pandemic seems to be nowhere near over, the vaccines are becoming increasingly available and more and more places are adapting to various measures that are implemented to keep everyone safe. All of that means that we could soon see borders opening up and have people traveling for pleasure and wellness once again. With that in mind, here are some wellness and travel trends that we can expect in the second half of 2021.
The use of digital devices has been on a steady rise in the last few years and during the pandemic, we had to rely on our smartphones and computers in order to see the people close to us, do our jobs, and stay in the loop with the latest news. However, it’s only normal that we sometimes need a break. That is why digital detox holidays are becoming increasingly popular. Regardless of whether individuals decide to travel far or stay in their area, these types of vacations allow people to surround themselves with nature’s sounds, smells, and sights or immerse themselves in a good book instead of endlessly scrolling their social media and staring at screens. Besides the blue light that can affect the quality of one’s sleep, using technology also comes along with plenty of negativity that can be found online. To avoid these stressors, people can go to meditation retreats or look for ranch vacation experiences.
Stress relief retreats
Worrying about getting infected, long periods of isolation, lack of social life, grieving a loved one, and losing work can all put our mental health in danger. People that had anxiety and depression even before the pandemic might have seen their symptoms aggravated while many people might have also developed a mental health condition during these uncertain times. Most retreats understand the circumstances we found ourselves in, which is why they started offering meditation workshops, in-house counselors, and various physical activities that can help guests improve their mood and get rid of stress.
Fitness and active holidays
With the pandemic also came the closing of parks, gyms, and swimming pools. While there was a boom in online tutorials for how to work out at home, many people just couldn’t keep up with their fitness routine without a trainer present. Combined with sitting in front of a screen with almost no responsibilities, this led to many people looking for a fitness holiday that will help them lose those extra pounds they gained during the pandemic. On the other hand, there are also people that manage to stay in shape but are looking for an active holiday that will get them out of the house. From cycling tours to hiking vacations, the opportunities to stay in shape while on holiday abound.
Escapes into nature
After being cooped up for so long, individuals are also on the lookout for holidays that will let them escape into nature. Fortunately, the options when it comes to leaving all the hustle and bustle behind are various. For example, those that prefer active holidays can ready their mountain bicycles and look for a prime location for some mountain biking. Alternatively, those that are looking to rest and recharge their batteries can opt for remote eco-locations like mountains, private beaches, and even rainforests. Getting back to nature is often accompanied by a holistic approach to health that includes physical, emotional, and spiritual wellness, and these types of retreats are something that many individuals are in search of. Furthermore, surrounding oneself with nature can bring about a better appreciation of life and greater self-exploration, which are in high demand after the year we’ve all had. Lastly, this approach is amazing as going away to a distant and secluded destination also lowers the risk of getting infected.
However, 2020 wasn’t marked only by the pandemic. The world also saw floors, droughts, forest fires, and many more effects of climate change. All of this made people more aware than ever before of the impact that humankind has on the planet. With the goal of being mindful and reducing their carbon footprint, travelers are looking into sustainable tourism. For example, some individuals are swearing off traveling by plane and opting only for destinations that they can reach in a green way. Then, there are also people who are looking for holiday spots that are implementing sustainable travel practices, such as powering premises with alternative energy sources and protecting cultural and natural heritage. What is more, travelers also want to ensure all the money they spend during their travels goes directly to those people they’re visiting.
Self-care becomes an essential part of travel
Practicing self-care is something that many people started doing during the pandemic. From eating healthily and exercising more to trying new skincare products all the way to doing everything in one’s power to prevent serious illness, self-care comes in many shapes and forms. This trend is moving into travel as well. Wellness retreats provide individuals with an opportunity to devote some time to themselves through yoga, meditation, spa therapy, and various other treatments and activities. The best thing about this type of travel is that it can be easily tailored to different groups of people. Plus, this is something that can be offered to travelers regardless of location, meaning that it can be found in seaside resorts, mountain lodges, and even in a busy city.
More communication between agencies and clients
Going forward, we can expect much more communication between travel agents and their clients. For starters, agencies will have to familiarize travelers with the safety protocols that might be in place at their destination of choice. Moreover, in the days leading up to the departure, agents also have to notify clients of any changes at the borders or their accommodation. Then, industry operators will have to revisit and revise all their terms and conditions. Revising the deposit and cancellation policies will be essential as well, in order to protect both parties. Additionally, it will be essential that the travel agent stays in touch with the client throughout the trip as there can always be some updates that change the travel situation completely. If the borders are shut down once again, it will be vital to know who to turn to and how to get home safe. Lastly, sending useful information and relevant content will also play a big role in creating a sense of trust among clients.
In just a year, the way we travel has changed tremendously. In addition to having to meet a country’s requirements before entering, what we expect from a holiday is no longer the same. Lowering our stress levels, going out into nature, and caring for the planet are the most important trends that are sure to continue even after 2021.