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How do you think this new "breed" and generation(s) of travelers will influence the future of adventure tourism?

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imageRobin Weber Pollak, President of JOURNEYS International

“Adventure experiences are bound to become more flexible, accommodating virtually unlimited permutations of activities and itineraries.”

imageJorge Pérez of Tierra del Volcan

“I think adventure tourism is confronting a new challenge with this new breed of traveling. You have to open your mind and understand these new needs and adapt your product to meet what they are looking for. We have a great responsibility towards these new ‘ultra-technology’ generations. We have to take them outside of their technology comfort zone, and connect them with nature, and give them another experience.”

imageAlexandra Greenwood, Head of Sales of HF Holidays Ltd.

“Local smaller adventure operators will expand if they can reach target audiences effectively digitally and via social media – which will become one of the key components of the spontaneity and global nature of the next generation of travellers. From a North American aspect this is already the norm, but from a European perspective, this is yet to mainstream.”

imageMaria Elena Price, Co-Owner of ExperiencePlus! Bicycle Tours

“I think adventure tourism is set up to cater to this group of new travelers perfectly. Adventure or active travel companies are inherently offering an experience that is personalized, and it rarely has a ‘mass’ tourism format – i.e. traveling around in a bus repeating the same steps for a week (drive, stop, visit, sleep…repeat). But, one of the hardest things to manage is the segmentation and fragmentation of such a diverse travel market. People may consider themselves adventure travelers, but there are many different ways to be an adventure traveler. Let’s say you want to go walking in Canada or kayaking in Mexico or cycling in France – these are three very different activities that likely attract different people and can mean different things.  Is it high altitude hiking for a week, a day of whitewater kayaking and a full traverse of Mont Blanc on a mountain bike? Or was it a one day cultural city walk, a float trip in Cancun and a one day bike tour along the Loire River in France that the person was looking for?  It would be good to find a common language so that travel companies and future or current adventure travelers know how to best communicate as many of these activities can be one thing in one’s imagination, but another when you are on the ground operating or when you are looking for travelers.”

imageManfred Häupl, of Germany’s Hauser Exkursionen

“I believe that the basic needs of new and boomer generation are quite similar but they show up in their generation’s way:

  • It’s the yearning for pureness in the nature (the motivations why are different)

  • The longing for a healthy and sustainable world in nature and society

  • The personal experience in the outdoors either to test your personal borders or to self experience

  • The lust for exotic

  • Free zones from the technical world

I believe that the new generation of traveler will make their experiences: First they try a lot by themselves and they will be successful or not, they will try to save money with direct bookings, they will have enough time to do so and later when they are in their jobs, they will appreciate the services of professionals to help them organize their adventures – and they will realize that direct booking and organizing is not automatically the better deal – this means for us, we also have to see the agents in the world as partners but also as potential competitors. We have to come to exclusive agreements to define our markets with them.”

imageJames Thornton, Managing Director of Intrepid Travel

“Each generation demands new innovations and adventure travel operators need to meet them. We have seen that customers have become more culturally, politically and environmentally aware. We need to be transparent in our environmental/sustainability practices and demonstrate how we are operating responsibly in every place we visit. Our booking systems and customer service needs to meet last minute requests and expectations.”

imageGert Nieuwboer, CEO of SNP Natuurreizen

“Completely. It means that small modular packages have to be booked on the spot and offered through tablets and smartphones. Short modules, direct bookable and payable, only digital road books, GPS tracks etc. – a completely new design of our business.”

imageJimena Barrera, AMERICAS Division Manager of Condor Travel

“They will demand more! We need to become experts on different subjects, topics, interests… even the ones we don’t necessarily follow. We need to provide options.”

 

imageAndy Levine, President & Founder of DuVine Cycling + Adventure Co.

“Travelers always want to connect with the local culture, we have to only hope the world stays small and village markets don’t turn into super malls.”

imageDan Austin, Director of Austin-Lehman Adventures

“I am really struggling with ‘New Breed,’ there really is nothing new.. travelers have always wanted authentic as part of their experience. Perhaps now it is just a bit more top of mind. I do think as referenced above we need to look a bit deeper at the differences between active and adventure travel and this is where the delta might be growing. Two different clientele.”

1 Comment to How do you think this new "breed" and generation(s) of travelers will influence the future of adventure tourism?

  1. Very interesting. I think MARIA ELENA PRICE said it best when she said “It would be good to find a common language so that travel companies and future or current adventure travelers know how to best communicate as many of these activities can be one thing in one’s imagination, but another when you are on the ground operating or when you are looking for travelers.”

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