Adventure Travelers Vote for Diverse Activities

Cecilia Garland - Jan 27, 2014
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As global tourism continues to grow the adventure market also continues to get bigger and better. Destinations and travel companies need to know who the adventure tourists are, what their preferences are and what they plan for the next trip.

One of the interesting things about adventure travelers is the fact that majority of the male adventurers are single (48%). This might be attributed to the fact that most single adventure travelers are young (around 36 yrs) compared to non-adventurers most of whom are older (41 yrs and above). These are the findings published in last year’s Adventure Tourism Market Study.

Another equally important observation is the fact that 37% of all adventurer travelers have at least a four year degree whereas another 11% have professional degrees. What’s more, for adventure travelers, the average income level stands at $46,800. Adventure travelers have also been found to be very fond of publications like Men’s Health and the National Geographic Traveler both of which feature traditional adventure ideas as well as a variety of recreational topics.

Some of the main aspects of the travel experiences cited by most adventure travelers as preferable are: relaxation and exploration of new places, quality time with family as well as learning more about different cultures. Thus, in spite of engaging in more adventurous activities compared to non-adventurous travelers, the underlying motivation for these trips is similar for both cases. The only exception is that adventure travelers rate time spent with the family slightly lower than non-adventure travelers which may be caused by the fact that most of them are young and many don’t have families of their own.

According to adventure travelers, the natural beauty, activities available and climate in this order are the key determinants of their last destination. Non-adventure travelers on the other hand ranked friends, family and finally natural beauty in this order as the main determining factors when picking their last destinations. From the above, it is clear that adventure travelers stand to be more attracted to secure destinations characteristic of a variety of adventure activities more than a destination where friends and family are present.

The Adventure Tourism Market Study also established that adventure travelers were more likely to take advantage of professional services such as tour operators, guides, instructors compared to non-adventure travelers. However, 56% of adventure travelers said that during their last trip they have operated independently. The relatively high preference for professional services among adventure travelers clearly shows the need for training as well as special equipment for a variety of adventure activities. All of this collectively not only reinforces the growth of adventure market but also creates more opportunities for operators and guides who as a result find it much easier to attract and convert non-adventure travelers looking forward to more new experiences.

The research showed that 54% of adventurers confirmed their willingness to take part in more adventure activities during their next trip. The increase in the number of adventure travelers interested in taking part in more activities is a clear indication that adventure travelers will most likely maintain this same trend even on future trips. One very interesting thing to note is the fact that only 22% intend to engage in the same adventure activities as before. This simply means that adventure travelers are not enthusiastic for any particular activity instead they are interested in diverse activities throughout their trip.

36% of current non-adventure travelers have shown interest in taking part in adventure activities, which is an indication that non-adventure travelers are open to trying out adventure activities which in turn causes a continuous growth of the adventure market. Although all travelers expect their trips to last the same as in their last trip, a slight increase in the length of trips has been noted across all categories.

With at least 45% of adventure travelers intending to take advantage of tour operators on the next trip, it is most likely possible that a good number of them are planning on making visits to destinations they are not familiar with or that they intend to engage in more adventurous activities than ever before. As much as travelers may exaggerate their intentions to take advantage of tour operators, it is also turning out that there is a very strong and equally potential market particularly for tour operators that is characteristic of very reasonable prices, appealing products and promotions as well.

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