Hilton's 2023 Global Trends Report reveals an interest in seamless travel, the search for more motivating experiences, a sense of being cared for and enhanced wellness offerings. If 2022 was the year of the changed traveler, 2023 will be the year of the evolved traveler.
The report reveals the latest consumer expectations at the conclusion of a year that saw a record amount of travel. According to a global survey and analysis of current trends, what today's travelers want is to balance technological and human innovations, have deeper and more caring connections, and achieve wellness experiences as part of the journey and more.
In 2022, motivated travelers are seeking new experiences around the world and reconnecting with the people and places they love.
The new report on travel in 2023 is derived from a survey of quantitative and qualitative data and analysis collected from more than 7,000 travelers worldwide, sponsored by Hilton and developed by Material, a global strategy, insights, design and technology partner. The survey identified four recurring themes for travel in 2023 based on travelers' experiences over the past three years.
People will turn to travel in search of deeper, more motivating human connections and experiences: Travel is a gateway to discovering different perspectives and rich traditions. In 2023, travelers will focus on creating deeper connections with family, friends, colleagues, customers, cultures and the planet. Nearly half (49%) of respondents want to be immersed in local culture and products when they travel, and another 40% want personalized access to unique experiences and activities, such as art performances, events, spa treatments or classes.
From destination-focused culinary interest travel packages to impactful programs like Travel with Purpose, which helps guests make a positive impact on the communities they visit, travelers are looking to be agents of change through more immersive travel experiences.
People will recognize that travel is an essential part of their wellness routine: Wellness continues to be top of mind for travelers. Half (50%) of respondents want to have travel experiences in 2023 that align with their wellness priorities and goals, encompassing mind, body and spirit.
For about one in two (47%) travelers, physical wellness and access to fitness amenities and services, such as gyms or activities, will be the primary focus of travel in 2023. Guests will also want to have moments of connection with their communities, such as ideas and solutions that improve their mental and emotional health. Taking care of mental health while traveling will be a priority for 35% of global respondents. On the other hand, 49% of working travelers will seek to travel to disconnect from work.
More than ever, travelers will want to be taken care of: Experts predict that in the coming year, travelers will place even greater value on experiences where they feel cared for. Eighty-six percent of respondents said they want recognition and personalization when they travel, and 25 percent said they want travel and hospitality companies to be able to meet their unique needs in 2023. Specifically, 54% want personalized food and beverage options and 50% want activities and experiences that are tailored to their needs.
Travelers know how important it is to be rewarded for their loyalty, both financially and personally. In fact, 42% of respondents indicated that loyalty benefits, such as being able to accumulate and redeem points, will be important to them when they travel in 2023.
The importance of providing reliable and welcoming service to all guests at all times is well understood, whether it's providing excellent care for families who value staying in touch or also hosting a traveling pet.
Travelers want seamless travel innovations that are both technologically advanced and humane: The year 2022 revealed unexpected friction points in travel. The survey worldwide showed that more than half (56%) of travelers will prioritize the adoption of solutions that make travel easier by 2023. Nearly nine in ten (86%) of respondents will want to have at least something personalized during their travel experiences and interactions, and 26% of respondents believe that the technology offered at the hotel will be important to their hassle-free stay.
To reduce the biggest stress points in travel, guests will look for the most logical and useful solutions. They will want the service and hospitality they craved before the pandemic, whether it's personalized restaurant recommendations, adjustments to their reservations or smart mobile apps.