Happy New Year, dear travellers! To kick off the year, here are 5 interesting 2015 travel trends to get you inspired to explore the world around you.
1. Let’s Fly Away
This year, airlines are servicing more destinations to take you exactly where you want to go!
The John C. Munro Hamilton International Airport (YHM) will see passengers heading to fresh destinations as its carriers introduce new flight schedules. In December, Air Transat began service to Puerto Plata, operating every Friday until April 17, 2015. They will also begin flying to Cayo Coco on February 13 until April 17,2015. Also out of the Hamilton airport, Sunwing began flying to Punta Cana. Passengers on this flight will be some of the firsts to experience the new adult-only resort, CHIC Punta Cana.
Air Transat will begin offering weekly direct service to Budapest from Montreal and Toronto after the success of their service to Prague, as well as more frequent service to main European destinations including Paris, London, Barcelona, Athens, Lisbon, Marseille, Nantes, Rome, and Venice.
Passengers can get to Amsterdam this summer with Air Canada, introducing their service in June. Between June and September, Air Canada will also offer non-stop service to Paris from Toronto and Montreal twice a day. Also during the summer of 2015, Air Canada will service Toronto to Rio de Janeiro and Panama City.
Just in time for ski season, Air Canada launched its seasonal non-stop flight from Toronto to Mont Tremblant, operating four times per week until March 30, 2015.
2. Plane Mates
Get through those long-haul flights with a new friend by your side. KLM’s Meet and Seat program allows you to choose your seat neighbour based on social network profiles. Log in to share your profile details with other participating passengers on your flight and see where they’ll be sitting. Find someone interesting? Select from available seats and hope for the best! Are celebrities more your style of seat-mate? Delta’s Innovation Class allows you to apply for the chance to sit beside leaders in innovation like Ryan Lewis and Sean Brock as they fly to their events.
3. A New Kind of Holiday
Do-it-yourself vacations are emerging as a 2015 travel trend. People are investing their time in researching and putting their vacations together piece-by-piece with a travel agent instead of opting for a vacation package to get more value for their money. Emerging with this trend are two noticeable changes: vacation rentals and eating with the locals. Apartment rentals and boutique hotels are gaining popularity, with rooms only available through sites like Airbnb, blending the line between hotels and hosts. The demand for alternative accommodations is evident; Hawaii alone is home to approximately 22,238 vacation rental units which account for more 43,000 bedrooms, according to a Hawaii Tourism Authority study. With this desire for affordable, authentic, and laid-back vacationing comes a desire for eating with locals in their home. Sites like EatWith or BookaLokal pair visitors with home cooks for a fee. Cool, right?
4. Hotel Openings
For those who still prefer a traditional hotel, 2015 will see many new hotel openings around the world.
Sunwing Vacations opened the 5-star Royalton Riviera Cancun and its “resort within a resort,” The Hideaway. With 843 rooms, the family friendly Royalton Riviera Cancun has Kids Stay, Play and Eat free deals, a supervised Kids Club, splash pad, playground, and 9 restaurants. The adult-only oasis, The Hideaway, is a 340-room boutique hotel offering the ultimate romantic and opulent beach experience.
Opening in Cuba is the Royalton Hicacos in Varadero, formerly Sandals Royal Hicacos, and Memories Holguin Beach Resort, formerly Riu Playa Turquesa. In Mexico, Allegro Cozumel just reopened in December after significant renovations. The all-suite resort, Hyatt Ziva Puerto Vallarta will occupy the former Dreams Puerto Vallarta after its 20-million dollar renovation. Further to the West, Hawaii’s first Hampton Inn will open this summer in Oahu.
Marriott’s Asia-Pacific portfolio will increase to 28 hotels with the addition of the 274-room hotel in Kochi, the 5th Marriott in India.
Closer to home, Aloft Buffalo Airport hotel is opening about 10 minutes from the Buffalo Niagara International Airport.
5. Where To?
Las Vegas: Tourism to “The Entertainment Capital of the World” drew more than 40 million visitors in 2014, surpassing its record. Ongoing developments in the city will continue to attract visitors in 2015.
Mozambique: Travellers are becoming increasingly adventurous and exploring countries for more than the beach — though Mozambique’s sugar white sands and turquoise waters are definitely alluring. This Southeast African country has both rustic lodges and high-end hotels and offers much in the way of activities: go on a classic safari and visit game reserves, relax on the beach, discover coral reefs and turtles on diving and snorkeling excursions, and experience the rich culinary delicacies the country has to offer.
Back in the Caribbean, destinations like Martinique and Dominica provide unique choices for well-seasoned travellers. But Cuba is where the spotlight rests now, as people speculate how its new relationship with the United States will pan out. The Caribbean Tourism Organization shows that Cuba is the second most visited island in 2014 after the Dominican Republic, with roughly 900,000 arrivals from Canada. As long-time Cuba visitors, we’ll continue to enjoy its world-class beaches, jazz music and architecture, expanding restaurant scene, and cigars – even more so in 2015.
What do you predict for 2015 travel trends? Comment below!