New travel list uses online data from Expedia, Stayz and Wotif, plus a survey of 20,000 global travellers to predict the top trends for 2024.
HITTING the road to discover Australia's regional gems has been identified as one of the top trends for 2024 in a new hot-off-the-press annual trends report.
They also identify the top trending international flight paths: number one, with a 430 per cent increase was Los Angeles to Tokyo; closely followed by Perth to Bali (up 350 per cent).Top three trending domestic flight destinations were Broome (up 185 per cent), Uluru (up 120 per cent) and Hamilton Island (up 105 per cent).
One of the biggest trends to watch is what they term Regional Glow Ups, or the rise and rise of hip Aussie towns on traveller's hitlists.
With new hotels, restaurants, bars and tours popping up across the country, regional Australia is seen as offering new and exciting experiences for travellers. More than a third of the Aussie survey respondents say travelling to new and different regional towns has increased in appeal, and that one or two new openings is enough to make them want to travel to that particular destination. Their top five trending destinations are Newcastle and Bellingen in NSW, Kirra in Queensland, and Geelong and Lorne in Victoria.
The other travel trends are:
Beyond the Feb Fast and Dry July events, there are more sober-curious travellers. With research finding that almost 40 per cent of Aussie travellers are interested in alcohol-free or low-alcohol travel options, expect to find more no-alcohol bars, cellar doors, distilleries and menus, as well as "non-imbibing" getaways.
In 2023, the Expedia trend-spotters notes that travellers are turning to TV, movies and especially streaming services for travel inspiration and this "set-jetting" trend shows no signs of stopping in 2024. So, moving on from Yellowstone and The White Lotus-inspired journeys then, we will now have Lioness (Mallorca) and Bad Monkey (Florida Keys and Bahamas) as well as new seasons of Bridgerton and The Crown (the UK) and apparently even Squid Game 2 (South Korea) for our next travel-inspo.
Coined for the TikTok movement, where dupes are affordable alternatives to popular products, this trend refers to the less crowded, lesser-known alternatives to popular holiday spots - unexpected, probably more affordable, but just as delightful as the tried-and-true destinations. Think Taipei instead of Seoul, Pattaya instead of Bangkok, Paros instead of Santorini and Liverpool instead of London.
In 2023, Taylor Swift's Eras and Beyonce's Renaissance tours drove record-breaking concert sales, as well as tourism. This will continue to grow, with more than 60 per cent of Australian survey respondents saying they would travel to a concert outside of their own town, and more than 40 per cent using a concert as an excuse to visit a new place. Unexpected places on Expedia's list of top tour tourism destinations - where well-known artists are expected but accommodation may be cheaper - include Kuala Lumpur, Edmonton and Mexico City.
Beyond the traditional girls' weekends and family reunions, travellers are looking for any excuse to take a group getaway in 2024. Survey respondents name-checked first-date-versaries, quit-my-job and promotion parties, and even puppy-moons as excuses to travel.
The survey shows almost half of travellers book holiday homes with amenities they either cannot afford to have at home, or that they want to try out before they buy themselves - from cold plunges and infinity pools to roof terraces and fire pits.
And, of course, AI!
In 2023, generative AI tools like ChatGPT take centre stage, but only 6 per cent of travellers say they use it for their trip. In 2024, the generation of generative AI users will come of age as they adopt this tech to plan, shop and book their trip with unprecedented ease: almost 40 per cent of travellers say they would use this tech to find the perfect stay.
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