The release of the ABTA Holiday Trends for 2003 presents good news for spa destinations globally, with the Far East, Europe and the Caribbean coming out top.
According to the Trends Report compiled by Frances Tuke of the ABTA Corporate Affairs Department, spa holidays are becoming increasingly popular. One specialist ABTA member reported a 27% growth in 2001 and a 20% growth in 2002. Essentially, spa resorts and hotels have been developed around natural phenomena such as volcanic or mineral springs, but man-made spas which focus on treatments have also been experiencing a rise in demand. Growth in the area has been for the 18-60 year-olds who buy treatments rather than the traditional spa client who would be over 60, with non-specific aches and pains or with specific health complaints.
The report states that people go for all kinds of reasons including pampering, de-stressing, counselling, detoxing, weight loss or just to relax, while typical activities and treatments include aromatherapy, fangotherapy, homeopathy and yoga.
Tuke also concluded that the travel industry is very optimistic for 2003. 2002 has been a very unusual year for the travel industry. The combined events of 11 September 2001 and a slowing down of the global economy meant slightly fewer package holidays were sold, but indications of early sales for summer 2003 means that growth is expected to resume in 2003.