Tourism

“Travellers want to disconnect”: James Thornton on the evolving travel client

That’s it, folks! We’re donezo for the year.

Time to sit back, relax and drown ourselves in champagne and Christmas cake.

But first, we’ve got some words of wisdom for you to help get you set up for the new year.

As you may have noticed over the past few weeks, we’ve been sharing predictions for the year ahead from some of the industry’s most influential figures to help our readers kick-start their new year.

And today is no exception.

Below we have for you some great advice from the one and only James Thornton, CEO of Intrepid.

See you all in 2019!


The way people travel is evolving.

People want to travel with companies that have a social conscience and give people real life experiences on the ground that benefit local people as well as the travellers themselves.

Travellers want to disconnect.

Mobile phones were designed to make our lives easier, but somehow they seem to leave to us feeling even busier and stressed and tired as we become more connected and that’s making people feel burnt out.

We’re seeing lots of people who want to get off the beaten track and go to places they wouldn’t otherwise have the opportunity to go and so we expect our expeditions to perform really strongly next year, because they give people the opportunity to disconnect from the real world and I think that will be really important.

Almaty Mountains, Kazakhstan (Istock/Aureliy)
Almaty Mountains, Kazakhstan (Istock/Aureliy)

Destination wise, I think we’ll see more people travelling to the central Asian, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and Mongolia.

Places like Greenland for polar travel, African destinations like Ethiopia and Zimbabwe I think will be quite popular and not just for getting away and disconnecting, but also to escape overtourism, which has gotten so much attention recently.

People recognise the impact that tourism can have if it’s not managed correctly and so I think we’ll see a lot of popularity around alternative destinations.

Japan will really fly next year, it’s just super, super popular and I think it will definitely grow in demand in 2019.

But tour operators will need to offer experiences beyond the traditional destinations like Kyoto, Hiroshima or Tokyo, where overtourism is starting to rear its head.

Aviation

How Air Canada is making its mark on gender equality, locally and globally

With the Women in Travel Awards 2019 just days away, we wanted to shine the light on a company that truly values female representation across the board.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Aviation wrap: Qantas grows US network, Emirates reduces single-use plastics, Air Vanuatu’s new service + more

This week’s aviation wrap comes free of any mentions of flaperons, altimeters or horizontal stabilisers.

Share

CommentComments

Cruise

TAA warns cruise industry could “flatten out” if Sydney doesn’t expand berthing facilities

Though that’s not to say Sydney’s overseas passenger terminal will now be equipped with a steamroller to flatten cruise ships at will.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Unruly passenger slaps cabin crew, throws up on Paris flight

Just when you thought nothing could top United’s ant-infested flight, Travel Weekly is proud to inform you of this mid-flight puke fest.

Share

CommentComments

Tourism

REVEALED: The number one Aussie brand for Chinese consumers is not what you think

If you think we left the name of the top brand out of this headline to make you click on it, you’re absolutely right.

Share

CommentComments

Tourism

“Australia remains a billion-pound market for Britain”, says VisitBritain CEO

by Teresa Russell

Have you lost faith in Great Britain’s appeal as a destination for Aussie travellers? Have it restored here with this.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Woman hilariously live-tweets ant-infested flight

by Ali Coulton

If you can think of anything worse than being surrounded by unruly insects during a nine-hour flight, please email your response to notpossible@doesnotexist.org.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

Kiwis to say ‘Good Morning World’ every day for next 12 months as part of Tourism NZ’s new brand campaign

Kiwis are getting up at the crack of dawn to welcome the world as part of a Tourism NZ campaign. Meanwhile, Travel Weekly staff will be tucked up in bed wearing their Peter Alexander PJs and pom pom nightcaps.

Share

CommentComments

Tourism

STUDY: 95 per cent of Aussies have holiday regrets, with a quarter wishing they’d had a fling

Travel Weekly’s editor has many holiday regrets – the tattoo of a particular appendage on his right bicep being just one of them.

Share

CommentComments

Hotels

Airbnb launches new project to support country pubs

Meanwhile, Travel Weekly staff are supporting our local pub by blowing half our pay on its happy hour specials.

Share

CommentComments

Hotels

Opinion: Automation is the secret to personalisation in hotels

by Ahmed Youssef

We couldn’t find a robot who was willing to write this article for us, so we enlisted the help of Amadeus’ Ahmed Youssef instead.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Plane struck by lightning before fiery crash: report

A preliminary report on the tragic Aeroflot plane crash that killed 41 people last month has provided some more clarity around what went wrong.

Share

CommentComments