Complex Made Simple

Europe: High-income travellers’ favourite destination

With Eid Al Adha just around the corner, LuxuryMena.com, sister publication of Aficionado, looks at emerging travel trends this year.

Thirty per cent of high-income travellers – with a household income of $100,000 or more – are planning to travel to Europe, reveals Luxury Link’s December 2013 survey that canvassed 1,667 respondents from around the world.

Approximately 677 participants stated that they look for fine dining options, while 711 are keen to partake in adventure activities. Nearly 55 per cent is planning multiple international trips in 2014.

“There is absolutely no doubt in the fact that there’s been an increase in travel-related activities this year, from honeymoons and family tours, to corporate travels and, primarily, back packing,” adds Mary Grace Natal, sales co-ordinator at Dubai Leisure Holidays.

Although the Maldives, Southern France and Geneva were popular luxury travel destinations in the past, according to Luxury Link’s survey, Croatia (27.2 per cent), Portugal (18.4 per cent) and Vietnam (15.1 per cent) top the list this year. Meanwhile, Natal adds: “The most common destinations include Malaysia, Singapore and Turkey.”

This suggests a change in the pattern of luxury travel. “The nature of luxury travel is definitely changing, as conspicuous consumption gives way to more discreet travel. We see a lot of customers seeking once-in-a-lifetime, enriching experiences over traditional five-star resorts with an infinity swimming pool,” says Rob Young, founder and managing director at The Exclusive Travel Group, in an interview with LuxuryMena.com earlier this year.

Young adds that, over the past two years, there has been a 200-plus per cent increase in the number of Middle Eastern travellers seeking alternatives to resort-style holidays.

Interestingly, however, when it comes to key features and amenities that luxury travellers look for, a whopping 1,260 want free WiFi access, 892 want early check-in and check-out options and 458 want on on-site spa at the hotel/resort.

First published on LuxuryMena.com