2022 MAY BE THE YEAR THAT TRAVEL REALLY COMES BACK
Overseas Adventure Travel (O.A.T.), the leader in personalized small group and solo-friendly travel for Americans ages 50+, announced its top 4 travel themes for the year ahead.
"Our travelers are very optimistic about 2022," said Brian FitzGerald, Chief Marketing Officer of O.A.T. "From seasoned travelers to solos traveling on their own for the first time, people are making plans to start seeing the world again, especially those places that they've vowed to see in their lifetimes."
"Our travelers are very optimistic about 2022," said Brian FitzGerald, Chief Marketing Officer of O.A.T.
O.A.T. resumed travel in July 2021 and brought 11,000 travelers to more than 30 countries. In 2022, nearly 69,000 travelers have reserved travel with O.A.T., which typically offers travel to 85 countries.
O.A.T. Top 4 Travel Themes for 2022:
Solo surge – Never dreamt of traveling solo? 2022 could be your year to test the waters. Many people who put their dreams on hold because a friend or spouse couldn't join are no longer waiting. They are stepping out of their comfort zones and booking solo. Blame it on the pandemic and being cooped up for too long. O.A.T. has seen a 17% uptick in the number of solo travelers since 2019. The company just added 2,000 more single spaces in 2022—92% of which have free single supplements. Solo travelers -- the majority of whom are women with O.A.T. -- often find small group tours appealing because they meet and spend time with others easily when they want.
Small ships – Sailing with fewer people is attractive to travelers in 2022. At O.A.T., bookings for small ships in 2022 are up 10% compared to 2019. More than 14,000 travelers are scheduled to travel with O.A.T. through 2022. Travelers are attracted to travel by small ship for the opportunity to visit more remote and smaller ports with smaller vessels. There is also the chance to mingle in small groups with locals in a less touristy way. That doesn't happen when hundreds of passengers disembark from a large ship.
Sustainable travel – "How can we travel more responsibly?" It's a many-faceted question that is gaining traction with travelers of all ages. Travelers' interest in environmental travel dovetails with initiatives such as the Glasgow Declaration on Climate Action in Tourism, which is spurring on the travel industry to track and improve travel's impact on the environment. For some travelers, sustainable travel involves ecological conservation. For others, it is seeking out destinations where their travel dollars will have a positive impact on the local community – for example, benefitting its economic development. Travelers are highly interested in O.A.T.'s Arctic Expedition: Untamed Norway & Svalbard and Ultimate Galápagos Exploration & Ecuador's Amazon Wilds, for example.
Longer trips – Some travelers want to make the most of the airfare. Others feel the urge to make up for lost time due to the pandemic. They want to feel truly immersed in a different culture and have more opportunities to engage with the locals. The result? Longer trips planned for 2022. At O.A.T., 55% of solo travelers reserved for future travel have opted to arrive early before a trip or stay later after the tour concludes. Extending a trip by arriving early can help a traveler to acclimate before a tour begins. Staying later after the group departs allows time for a traveler to do some independent exploring and savor the experience a bit longer.
More than 87,000 travelers – nearly half of them solo travelers – currently have reservations with O.A.T. across 85 itineraries. With 2023 departures of many adventures already open, nearly 9,000 are looking ahead to traveling then. O.A.T. provides travelers over 50 with impactful, intercultural experiences that help change people's lives. O.A.T. fosters an intimate and accessible experience, with groups limited to 16 travelers (average of 13) by land and 25 (average of 22) by sea.
For a free catalog or more information about O.A.T., please visit www.oattravel.com or call 1-800-955-1925.