The Africa Travel Week Trends Report, launched at WTM Africa 2022 this week, has unveiled the ten most important trends that will determine travel and tourism to Africa in a post-pandemic world. Emerging patterns include African cuisine taking place at the global table, greenwashing no longer cutting it, and slow tourism’s coming of age.
The ten trends are:
1. Greenwashing won’t cut it anymore: Greater transparency. More accountability.
2. African cuisine will take its place at the global table: Mouth-watering African cuisine speaks for itself… but the African tourism industry must do its part to prepare potential tourists for African gastronomy and to create excitement around it.
3. Diversity: ‘The diversity traveller’ emerges — people with needs beyond the nuclear couple or family, such as single women travelling alone, single-parent families etc.
4. Accessibility will be a game changer for tourism: Tourism environments and services will need to be designed with different access requirements in mind.
5. Luxury is no longer about money:It’s about time and wellness. Travelling with purpose, meaningful experiences, bucket-list destinations and itineraries, and exclusive escapes (travel bubbles and remote locations away from the crowds) are the main luxury travel trends we’ll see in Africa.
6. Travel Bubbles: The pandemic may be largely behind us, but ‘travel bubbles’ are here to stay with a marked increase in demand for multigenerational trips. Africa is ideally positioned to tap into this exciting trend.
7. From over-tourism to impact tourism: Restorative safaris that make a positive impact on conservation and communities will become more popular, as will intimate and authentic experiences.
8. Slow tourism is coming of age: People are taking longer trips with fewer stops, the coming of age of what has been coined ‘slow tourism’.
9. Flexcation, bleisure, workcation − the workforce of tomorrow: Employees are now insisting on a more flexible workplace with a renewed focus on work-life balance. This new trend is creating incredible opportunities for destinations in Africa.
10. Tech and human connection go hand-in-hand: Most of us have forgotten how to live – and travel – without technology. The pandemic has accelerated our adoption of technology even further.