10 Travel Trends for 2021

I am sure many of you reading this share my wanderlust. 2020 is now the distant past and I am looking ahead with a degree of positivity at what may lie ahead for us in the world of travel. The past year has certainly heightened my own cravings. Never shall we take the world at our fingertips for granted. Freedom is fragile.

Here are ten distinct possibilities as to what 2021 may look like.

  1. 2021 is set to be a hugely significant year in the tourism industry with a boom in big concept bucket list travel.
  1. The length of holidays will increase. An Amadeus study identified an uptick in search for holidays in excess of 14 days. During the pandemic many have been saving up their cash and work holiday allowances as much as possible.
  1. The AirBnB business model has shifted toward the long stay “single residency” trend that is developing.
  1. The rise of working out of office. Longer term work arrangements combined with holidays will thrive. Barbados was the first country to pounce on demand with their ‘digital nomad’ visa programme. Other locations following their lead are Croatia, Georgia, Estonia, Dubai, Anguilla & Aruba.
  1. Destinations have an opportunity to reinvent themselves. The restart is allowing redesigns to take shape. Venice is investigating strategies to exclusively offer higher value tourist services and thus protecting 'The Venezia’ brand. Expect more locations to be remarketing to new clientele.
  1. Private travel will be disrupted by dynamic start-ups breaking conventional thinking and allowing more access to the upper-mid section of the market. Examples include increases in flight clubs, flight sharing and last minute seats within the private aircraft sector made available through tech platforms and apps.
  1. Glampvan road tripping will continue to flourish. Consistent Wi-Fi, comfortable beds and Nespresso machines are now as standard.
  1. A rebalancing of demand toward escapes to nature over city breaks for shorter holidays. Although we do feel there are some unbelievable opportunities to see cities less the masses if you are prepared to swim against the tide. Think Venice. Think Istanbul.
  1. New travel corridors will spring up based on the pace of vaccination roll out by territories. The agreements will become more fluid and dynamic meaning change fees will become once and for all a thing of the past.
  1. Increase in airport technology. Increase in automated screening & rapid testing will be the norm. Airports will have a significant medical footprint. United Airlines already has a 15-minute test and result kit for the flight path of San Francisco with Hawaii. 

The Masters of Mayfair brand was born on a flight to Thailand. I was quite disenchanted at the sleep mask desperately and rather poorly aiding my sleep 35,000 feet above Kyrgyzstan. This is where my mind wanders when dreaming of an age of travel restrictions being relaxed. As much fun as being a stand in maths teacher, running the same route and zoom conferencing are; a tom yum soup and a negroni whilst the Andaman sea laps my feet at sunset do seem just that little bit closer as the vaccination machine gathers momentum. Hang on in there and embrace the dreaming and plotting of your next adventure. Travel may well be different in the post coronavirus age but it need not to be less enjoyable.

Please share your thoughts about the future of travel in the comments below, we will read every submission.

January 19, 2021 — JAMIE SMALLEY

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