In October, Connections launched a new event series for the global adventure travel realm in Slovenia. Caroline Bremner, Head of Tourism Research for Euromonitor International joined the inaugural event to discuss how external pressures are changing the industry and how the adventure travel model might be the key to success for all travel businesses.
After a delightful evening of cocktails and fine dining in the InterContinental Ljubljana to open the inaugural Connections Adventure, our suppliers and buyers were up bright and early the next day to begin networking, in the Connections Way.
A breakfast of hot coffee and delicious pastries geared the delegates up for the busy day ahead, which began with the ConnecTalk,”Adventure Travel: The Next Frontier”, with Caroline Bremner. During the twenty minute presentation, Caroline shared her projections for the adventure travel sector, and the challenges and opportunities coming our way.
Touching upon some of the global social and political forces that could affect adventure travel businesses, Bremner highlighted that airlines, for example, are under pressure from governmental organisations to cut their carbon emissions over the coming decades. This such backlash from communities affected by mass-tourism is causing perceptions of travel to change, which Bremner argues could result in restrictions on how often individuals can travel:
“There is a sense that there is a god-given right to travel, however, the tide is turning,” she said. “In the future, we could potentially be looking at personal travel quotas, where each individual is restricted to how much they can travel. At the moment it’s a free-for all, if you have enough disposable income, but perhaps this is changing.”
Bremner said personal travel quotas are a worst-case scenario, but urged delegates to consider how to future-proof their businesses by finding ways to benefit the local environment and communities they operate within.
She added that the adventure travel industry is better equipped than other sectors for these challenges, as it has a good track record for sustaining local communities: “When the day of reckoning comes and the governments come down hard on this industry, look at adventure travel – 60-70 percent of the revenues you create stay in the destination and that is compared to 10 percent for mass-market. Your business model is exactly what this industry needs”
This year, the Connections Adventure series will be heading to The Azores, Portugal on the 27-30 October 2019. To enquire about joining, please contact Greg if you are a supplier or Monika if you are a buyer.