The key global trends that will have an impact in 2012 and beyond have been listed by InterContinental Hotels Group, which has worked on the list with some of the most influential hospitality and travel experts.
What IHG calls a growing “brain spa” trend, for example, means that consumers’ growing desire for self-fulfilment is impacting travel in a big way. The market for goods and services responding to the demand for mental stimulation is expected to grow between $1 billion to $5 billion by 2015. Another trend is for indulgences – travellers treating themselves to one-off luxury items at places like airports and hotels.
A remapping of new global travel patterns is taking place, with a rise in populated areas outside city centres; smaller cities are being developed. This means that spas, for example, are more likely to be seen in an urban area now over a country retreat, and urban communities are developing around airports.
Another trend is how the internet will be used. IHG forecasts that the internet will slowly move out of conventional devices such as the mobile and move into less likely items like magazines – meaning that consumers may soon be buying items in-flight and receiving them at the destination. Or ordering food from mobiles and it being ready on the restaurant table on arrival.
[pictured: Loy Kratong at Chao Phraya River, Bangkok; courtesy IHG]