With the outbreak of COVID-19 and its catastrophic consequences, the tourism industry, along with many others is now experiencing unprecedented times making it ever so vulnerable. While the world of travel seems to have come to a standstill, there is still a lot that has been changing. The past few years have seen a paradigm shift in travel behavior owing to economic reforms, political stirs, globalization, lifestyle changes & increasing sense of liberalization amongst masses.

Are you prepared for this new era of tourism? Are you ready to expand your travel horizon? Are you ready to craft your personal world of travel? A few questions one might ponder on.

Well, I’ll allow you to find your own answers but meanwhile let me take you through the most prominent travel trends that are here to transform the face of the travel industry in 2020. 

1. STAYCATION

Had to stay home for way too long? Lack of days for long trips? Concerned about traveling far?

Enter the staycation which rightly fulfills your desire to make use of even the smallest weekends without venturing too far. While most of us believe that man-built environment can rarely match the treasures of nature, however, with agencies like Airbnbs and Wandertrails you are bound to change this opinion.

Staycation is the new name for the perfect blend of modern luxury & nature’s euphoria. Indulge in hordes of indoor activities, variety of cuisines & on-spot demands that’ll be happily catered to.   


2. BACK TO YOUR ROOTS

From learning granny’s mouth-watering recipes to exploring that abandoned haveli of your hometown. Maybe you are in search of a familiar cozy environment to experience the underlying layers of what your city has to offer.

Equipped with a new understanding of who they are and where they come from, people are now flocking to their homelands in multitudes such that it makes DNA travel here to stay! 


3. SLOW TRAVEL

Channel your frenetic mentality and embrace the pace of the local culture. Instead of thinking of your trip as a checklist, reframe it as an opportunity for growth and development.

Slow travel is choosing train over miles of clouds and exploring your immediate surroundings on foot. Whether it is baking in a locality’s cottage or pedaling away in the nearby lake, slow travel ensures that you won’t come back and need a “vacation from your vacation.”


4. SECOND CITY TRAVEL

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

Said Robert Frost and you are no exception if you too find yourself seeking out unconventional experiences. 

Put simply, second city travel involves exploring the lesser-known parts of a country. This not only helps the over-utilized tourist spots regain its structural beauty but also leads us to thrilling destinations that otherwise remain underrated. Furthermore, it helps the local community grow, prosper and gain advantage from the guests who come to witness the beauty of their land. This trend is seen popular particularly amongst millennials who consider off-the-beaten-track for more authentic experiences.

Some of the my own experiences for second city travel included: 

  • Jibhi over Manali
  • Chail over Shimla 
  • Gokarna over Goa 
  • Conoor over Ooty 

5. SPARTAN HOLIDAYS

Are you someone who wants to get away from the humdrum of urban life and disconnect from technology to experience absolute serenity? Then spartan holidays are the ones to help you rewire your lost depths. This kind of travel includes adopting a minimal lifestyle, consuming healthy food & having absolutely no technological gear.

All you need to do is pack the essentials & set off to discover the “other life”! Take your pick from these insanely beautiful places that are perfect for digital detoxification:

  • The distant land Spiti Valley, Himachal Pradesh 
  • Asia’s cleanest village, Mawlynnong, Meghalaya
  • The picturesque Dzongri Trek, Sikkim 
  • Vegetation Rich, Kalpatta, Kerala 
  • Nature at its pristine best, Chorla Ghat, Goa

6. PUT YOUR GREEN FOOT FORWARD

According to a report by Booking.com, 51 percent of travelers are likely to swap a destination with an alternative, if it results in less of an environmental impact. Our Travel choices embody our responsibilities towards nature and its safeguarding.

Travelers today are making sure that their conduct has a positive impact on global issues, helps promote peace, alleviate poverty, and preserves biodiversity. Being stuck with the same realization, millennials are now choosing roadways over airways to ensure that they do not contribute to pollution and hazardous emissions.

In a recent interview with National geographic Will jones, the founder of Journeys by Design and Wild Philanthropy said that “Travelers are increasingly interested in trips that mean something, and for the long-term. The knowledge that you’re contributing to something sustainable or beneficial is important.”

Here are few such sustainable tourism companies that will help you plan your most inspiring and rejuvenating trips:


7. THE INSTA-HOLIDAY

Away from the confusions of travel websites and cumbersome technical glitches, travel enthusiasts are now seeking high-ranking Instagram feeds to decide and plan their next venture.

According to Forbes, “In a survey conducted by UK company Schofields, more than 40 percent of respondents under 33 consider “Instagrammability” the most important factor in choosing their holiday destination.”

Looking at influencers posing on a deserted beach or relishing the lost and found delicacies across places, such images have an immense painterly impact on viewers, making them crave similar experiences & impact. Well, that’s some power Instagram!


8. PERSONALIZATION

Travel connoisseurs are looking out for authentic experiences, outlining a memorable atlas of the world that would align with their inner virtues. People are eager to explore everything and want to feel as if they are making a difference even when they are on vacation. They like to design their trips distant from the touristy norms and rather indulge in absorbing the local culture, food, festivals, events and more. 

The biggest plus of a personalized itinerary is that you’re the boss & with the boom of travel influencers it becomes extremely convenient to plan your own trip & shape your own journey, rather literally! 


9. CRUISE VACATION

Do you imagine yourself sailing along the glistening waves while the sea breeze brushes against your skin? Once considered too expensive, the cruise holidays are now being considered ‘Luxury on a Budget’

The western ideologies and movies have a huge following and play a significant role in promoting a particular idea of travel. And cruise travel is a trend tracing its inspiration from the same trajectory. 

On a cruise, your vacation begins as soon as you get on board. Best of people, freestyle cruising, world-class entertainment, multiple food options, exciting range of sports and recreational facilities, all these forms the ingredients of your perfect first-world-travel.  

Here are a few suggestions you can consider for your next cruise holiday:

  • The Golden Triangle Cruise
  • Brahmaputra River Cruise
  • Sunderbans Boat Cruise
  • Andaman Islands Glass Bottom Cruise

10. BLEISURE TRAVEL

As the work-life boundaries blur and with an increasing need to move out of traditional work set-ups, Bleisure Travels are becoming popular than ever. In order to think creatively, employers are now sensitive towards creating a balance and offering additional free time to explore the city. This involves allowing a few meals outside of the planned activities or coordinating activities for co-workers to bond beyond the set protocols.

Seems like work travel has brighter days to offer!


The Travel industry is defenseless to the unforeseen repercussions that COVID-19 is posing. Hence, it is a part of our social responsibility to choose destinations that are solely dependent on tourism as their source of income and come together to overcome the consequences of the Pandemic. That being said, Travellers grow with the happenings around them and develop new interests, seek better experiences and add purpose to their roving.

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10 Comments

  1. “Travel!! – you will never regret” said a wise man before dying. In this busy schedule how the writer has managed to educate readers on new trends of travelling is unparalleled. The menu is sufficient for almost every type of traveller. I personally liked the “back to roots travel” which actually would help the traveller to know more about real India.
    I think to impart cultural empathy and a better understanding of the world is the aim of the writer. Her own travelling experience speaks a lot about hard work done by her before serving the dish to voracious readers. Good work!!!

    1. Thanks, for such a detailed analysis Ambuj!
      So glad you liked it.

      Also, when are you taking us to your Bhagalpur?

  2. Having routed by the writer’s Instagram post to this blog, I wondered what is she been busy with, and to my surprise, the very first topic in this blog is well structured and derives an alternative viewpoint towards certain travel aspects like second city, slow travel. This blog easy to digest and read through almost in a few minutes while aptly describing the precise points one would take away.

    1. I have always been very finicky about the structure of my article & the intent is to make it more readable & engaging.
      So happy to see my efforts getting translated!

  3. For someone who hardly reads anything, I have already read the entire thing twice. Beautifully written, I hope we get more such articles. Loved the way you categorised the different kinds of travel. SPARTAN HOLIDAYS section really triggered some memories. This blog is a wonderful start to an amazing journey of yours. Kudos Shivani!

  4. A very well articulated and engrossing blog. A very thoughtful & crisp – to the point introspection into the tourism/travel arena. Some really exciting & insightful take aways from here.
    Kudos to this new venture. Keep up the good work Shivani 👍

  5. Fantastic! Blog 👏👏
    The way you have explained the journey and decision of every individual towards travelling should be is ecstatic.
    No Doubt the tourist industry will be handling a huge hit due to this pandemic!!
    As you mentioned above “SECOND CITY TRAVEL” well that great idea to implement and segregate the crowed from well know place to an alternative destination and that howz all the travellers will be able to balance social distancing + Travel ethics to ensure hygiene.
    .
    I again give you a round of applause for the point “BACK TO YOUR ROOTS” travel. We have been monitoring the reality which media is screening since the lockdown was announced. Majority of people who have been moved to any metro cities due to XYZ reason tend to go back to their mother land where as they might have never looked back since they move out. People should go back to the land where they have invested their childhood for upcoming few months till the things get in control in our country rather then focusing on exploring new places!!

    At the end!! Very well drafted article, I guess this ia the best article I read in this lockdown period!! You did a Great combination of feeling and words to cascade you message 👏👏👏

    1. Hey Aakash,

      Thanks for such a motivating response. Means a lot 🙂

      I feel these trends are cues that we need to pick up in order to evolve as a traveler and fulfill our responsibilities. I personally feel very strongly about Second city travel, Going back to your roots & Green travel, since these are not just mere trends but rather need of the hour.

      Once again, thanks a ton & stay tuned for more articles 🙂

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