In the past year, each of us has tried, in our own way, to replicate the feeling of travel from home. With transcontinental zoom calls, new cooking experiments, and “live” online events, we have attempted to substitute the feeling of travelling to our favourite destinations. But by its very definition, travel can’t truly be experienced in this way.
As we reach the end of another challenging year for us all the good news is that more and more countries are cautiously creaking open their borders. In Asia Thailand has begun to move and we look forward to Indonesia and Malaysia following suit in early 2022.
Despite the challenges the Selo team has been very active throughout 2021 as villa and infrastructure construction continues at Selong Selo Resort and Serangan Indah. The team has also been busy planning for the re-opening of Selong Selo Selo Resort in the second quarter of 2022.
Despite the challenges of continued lockdowns, we have also launched the latest development in the Selo family. Samaja Selo Private Residences, Tioman Island, Malaysia comprising of 27 bespoke and co-ownership luxury villas.
Another key highlight from 2021 is the partnership with internationally acclaimed chef and restaurateur Will Meyrick. Will bring his wealth of experience in Asian cuisine in the development of culinary experiences across all Selo properties and real estate projects and the re-branding of Aura under the Will Meyrick brand.
The much-awaited reopening of Selong Selo Resort is planned for March 2022, when subject to travel restrictions, we are looking forward to welcoming back owners and guests to Lombok
As the future for Lombok continues to brighten the brand new Mandalika International Street Circuit in Lombok is set to join the 2022 MotoGP calendar and the location of the circuit could make it one of the most popular events – it is pretty much a beach front location close to Kuta Beach on the stunning island in Indonesia, which kick off from the 20th March 2022.
2022 is expected to produce even more travel trips than before the pandemic, a new report by the World Travel & Tourism Council states. Pent-up demand and frustrations at not being able to travel are likely to fuel a tourism renaissance and boom, as people look to reclaim their lives from the impositions of the pandemic. A combination of more confidence and reduced “fear factors”, despite the potential for new covid variants and having to make adjustments to the way travel used to be, should support the travel market during 2022.
But what key trends are we likely to see?
Generally, it’s going to be easier to travel domestically. Trips by road, rail or internal flights are going to be more comfortable than crossing international borders, especially as travellers have to bear in mind what limitations face them on their return to their home country.
Accommodation providers are actively marketing local, sometimes forgotten, attractions and events and promoting “Staycations” and dual business/leisure trips, suggesting travellers stay over after their business is finished.
Almost certainly, international traveller numbers will see a major uptick, although many travellers are still likely to opt for the shorter haul destinations just in case quarantine or other rules change whilst they are away.
Having said this, international trips may be longer in duration as people yearn to see and enjoy places they haven’t been able to see for some time, plus add in extra days to compensate for the hassles at airports and of covid testing.
Previously favoured international city and beach destinations should see big influxes of tourists.
As the travel industry recovers certain sectors stand out as particular winners:
Wellness travel: be well, stay well
The interest in wellness skyrocketed during the pandemic, with many people taking a fresh look at their lifestyles, dietary regimes and overall health. Holidays wholly or partially devoted to getting back into physical or mental shape, or advancing to the next level of well-being, are expected to boom.
Activity or educational based
Similarly, after a period of forced inactivity, many people are raring to get out and enjoy adventure based holidays, such as trekking, cycling tours, rafting or a combination of more sedentary tours, but still with an element of “active activities” and/or educational value..
Meaningful eco, green diversity tourism
The eco/green trend coupled with regenerative, sustainable or eco-tourism will likely grow rapidly in 2022. The trend was already becoming well established pre-pandemic but more and more people are currently planning a more holistic approach to life! Selo Group is at the forefront of these initiatives with the 2022 launch of the Selo Eco Park in Lombok and its regenerative, carbon net negative programmes across all its properties. Stay tuned for more updates..
Multi-generational travel resurfaces
Certainly, in Asia, many families are again looking at multi-generational travel. Parents and children are joining with grandparents to book vacations together. These may include trips for general leisure or sightseeing or in celebration of important family related milestones.
With more people remotely working and less need to be in the office, there is likely to be high growth in the numbers of remote workers and digital nomads taking trips.
As long as there is internet access to do work online or have the expected zoom call, many such people can simply set up an office in a hotel or resort, on a beach, or at a semi off-grid location.
There will also be a lot more people wanting to get on with their “bucket-list” travel which has been on hold for two years.
A number of countries are looking to upgrade the “quality of their visitors” – that is readjusting their marketing strategies to entice bigger spending tourists with the associated knock-on effects of upgrading their own accommodation and service provisions. Better hotels, resorts, more upmarket services.
Of course, mass, budget conscious tourism will not simply fade away per se, but there may be a readjustment in destinations and location where such tourism can be catered for,
Ultra-luxury travellers will continue to lean towards private air transport, private yachts or other private transport means as well as upmarket secluded villas and accommodation. Plus, of course, flexibility in schedule and attractive range of quality choices. Selo Group are again taking the lead in private air transport with the launch of its partnership with WingsOverAsia, that will offer direct flights from our hub in Singapore to our Island properties in Malaysia and Indonesia.
In the absence of further unforeseen factors and the emergence from Omnicron virus, we will see the removal of some of the more severe travel related restrictions and inconveniences, 2022 should be a stellar year for the tourist and business travel industry.
New trends will no doubt emerge, and the industry will need to be flexible enough to incorporate further change.