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How the wellness sector is transforming the world of travel

April 8, 2019

Mario Coletti, Nextatlas Managing Director UK

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Not long ago, people went on holidays with the sole purpose of visiting local attractions, getting a golden tan glow and drinking exotic cocktails. While this still hasn’t changed, what has evolved is that sleep-deprived world consumers are seeing vacations as an opportunity to focus on their mind and body as well. Mario Coletti, Managing Director UK at Nextatlas – an AI powered platform that predicts trends and cultural shifts before they happen – reveals the top trends that the travel and tourism sector needs to jump on in order to continue attracting customers and staying ahead of their competitors.


Increasing product offerings

Travel-related and hospitality businesses have started creating facilities and initiatives to attract modern guests. For their convenience, hotels have added in-room workout spaces and partnered with fitness brands to increase their product offerings. Many have started adopting biophilic design principles which can reduce stress to improve mental wellbeing of their guests. Some ways hotels approach this is by creating indoor-outdoor feel where guests surrounded by plants and nature, adjusting bedding and lighting to promote better sleep, adding healthy snacks and food options to minibars and restaurants. Until recently, virtual reality was perceived as a hard-core gamer’s dream, but some hotels have stepped it up by using VR goggles to elevate spa treatment experience. This is just the beginning, as hotels will have to continue to innovate in order to attract customers.


Experiential Cruises

Gone are the days of lazing by the pool, drinking sugary cocktails and indulging in an all you can eat buffet while being surrounded by the open ocean. There has been a rise of cruises focusing on providing travellers with much-needed, relaxing experiences. Cruises now offer luxury spas and fitness facilities, and are adding wholesome elements such as nutritious food options, meditation lessons and numerous seminars led by experts. In fact, nowadays, there are entire cruise excursions dedicated to healthy living and well-being.


Wellness festivals

Over the years, there has been a surge of people who want the fun of a music festival without the booze and pounding hangover. As a result, wellness events such as Morning Gloryville and festivals such as LoveFit, Sweatlife, Soul Circus, WellFest Ireland are becoming mainstream, specifically because of their hedonistic approach to health, emphasis on creating a short-lived sense of community and encourage both personal interactions and collective culture. As a number of new wellness festivals continue popping up all around the world, this trend is sure to stick around.


It’s time to fly

Airports and airlines are increasingly recognising that travelling can be dull and tedious as a result, travel industry is turning to all elements that create a positive mind-body experience. Airlines are investing in cabin amenities that can help fliers sleep more soundly on long flights or stay awake to avoid jet lag symptoms. The goal is to make transit to the destination part of the holiday and overall experience, before one flies, airport terminals and airline lounges are incorporating health and wellness activity. Basics such as nap pods and spas aren’t enough anymore. Lounges are now turning to yoga classes, VR technology, and even therapy dogs. Health-conscious cuisine, remedial videos and meditation have also been integrated into several airlines’ in-flight service providing their clients with a better and healthier traveling experience.

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