|The Bellagio Resort in Las Vegas is the site of this year's Travel Mart.// (c) 2011 Bellagio Las Vegas|
Travel Experts, Inc., surveyed 10 of its independent contractors who were headed to Virtuoso Travel Mart to determine what they’re seeing in the marketplace.
Here are their responses:
What is the biggest trend you’re seeing right now?
People with money are spending it. The trips may be shorter, but they are still traveling, and in style.
People booking further out
More seasoned travelers – and they want to travel farther and go somewhere their friends and family haven’t been. They don’t mind spending the money and time for something their moms didn’t do.
Generational travel – I have lots of grandparents taking their kids and grandkids, not just to Disney, but on safari, for instance.
A pulling away from the Middle East, where my clients had shown a lot of interest, and a surge to safer South America.
Families with small children traveling to more exotic destinations
High-end FIT Travel
What is the hottest destination right now?
Still Italy, followed by South Africa, Australia and lots of cruising
South America. Lots of requests for Alaska in 2012
The Maldives and Thailand
Still Europe, more domestic destinations and South America
For me, people are all over the map. But Europe is always big.
Italy, Cambodia and Vietnam
How has the market changed since last Travel Mart?
Business is up, more high-end, less mid-to-lower end.
Extremely steady travel requests for all over the globe, all sorts of different travel.
Booking window has lengthened, people feel more confident in spending.
If any change, just a continued growth in business and my best year yet!
The Middle East and Japan have changed where people are headed
Clients are finally beginning to book further in advance again, rather than waiting until the last moment.
The market is still excellent!
Much better, people have decided they are still going. They are booking early for those deep discounts.