One on One: 2020 Trending Destinations From American Express

Audrey Hendley, president, global travel and lifestyle services at American Express (right), interviews tennis star Venus Williams (left). // Photo by American Express Travel

It’s that time of year again – with 2019 winding down, many organizations are looking ahead to what’s hot in 2020, and American Express Travel is no exception. The company announced its list of trending destinations for 2020 at a special event in New York City Thursday night. 

Based on booking data from American Express cardholders, the trending destinations to watch for 2020 are:

  • Buenos Aires, Argentina (Up 35% year-over-year)
  • Cairo, Egypt (Up 40% year-over-year)
  • Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands (Up 33% year-over-year)
  • French Riviera (Up 15% year-over-year)
  • Kauai, Hawaii (Up 39% year-over-year)
  • The Italian Alps (Up 44% year-over-year)
  • Montana (Up 58% year-over-year)
  • Osaka, Japan (Up 68% year-over-year)
  • Shanghai, China (Up 25% year-over-year)
  • Whitsunday Islands, Australia (Up 20% year-over-year)

“There’s a very nice variety of places on the list,” Audrey Hendley, president, global travel and lifestyle services at American Express, tells Travel Agent regarding this year’s destinations. “I think we were surprised to see another region of Italy – last year was Tuscany, and this time we’re in the Alps.”

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Hendley says that a shift in destinations within a country, such as from a region like Tuscany to a mountainous area like the Alps, can represent a shift in the taste of American Express cardmembers, even as those members still seek out the same locations and cultures. 

Overall, 2020 bookings are on the rise. “For 2020, we’re looking at some nice growth,” Hendley says. “What really sets us apart is the diversity of the locations that they’re going to, the new places and new things.”

During the event, Hendley also spoke with tennis star Venus Williams, who had this to say about this year’s list of trending destinations:

“I’m a warm weather girl at heart and I love a beautiful beach,” Williams said. “I went on an amazing trip with my family to Kauai. The overall experience is a memory we will never forget.”

Also at the event, American Express announced several new additions to its Fine Hotels & Resorts program in this year’s trending destinations. They are:

  • Cap Estel in the French Riviera
  • Le Massif in the Italian Alps
  • The InterContinental Osaka in Osaka, Japan
  • The Shanghai EDITION in Shanghai, China
  • The InterContinental Hayman Island Resort in Australia’s Whitsunday Islands

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