More people are going to Africa than ever. It used to be that U.S. travelers used to explore Africa in the lap of luxury, making the continent an exclusive destination reserved for the high-end market. Today's savvy travelers are more focused on the experience and increasingly less on luxury accommodations. Africa and is huge and has a lot to offer from expensive safaris to very reasonably price tours.
Here are some of the trends.
Here are some of the trends.
- Itineraries that go deeper, allowing them to feel African and the adventure of the land. There are more multi-day mobile safaris, more authentic experiences, traveling at a slower pace and less focus on luxury for luxury's sake: walking safaris (multi-day, not just a one-hour activity); canoe trails, and fly camping. They are looking at locations that offer a real diverse array of activities with sleep-outs and tree-houses. A client's first trip to Africa may be South Africa, Cape Town, a game reserve, and Kruger National Park.. Then they come back looking for more in Botswana, Tanzania, Kenya, and Zambia.
- Diverse Expectations:
It used to be reserved for the high-end market. Bui today's savvy travelers are more focused on the experience and increasingly less on luxury accommodations. There is a new concept, the "High-Low Safari," which consists of a few days roughing it on a canoe/walking trail in a dome tent followed by a stay at a luxury lodge. This is affordable.
- Conservation is Important:
There is a rise in conservation-oriented travel, as clients want to experience that "feel-good" factor of helping wildlife/the environment but simply don't have the funds or time to commit to a long-term volunteer vacation. Safaris have always been and will continue to be the biggest draw for travel to Africa, but there has been a shift toward a more hands-on role in the conservation process. Many of these activities are built around rhino conservation, for example: tracking rhinos on foot or joining a vet to assist in the microchipping of wild rhinos.
- More Than Just Animals:
Although wildlife remains the main reason most U.S. travelers visit Africa, there has been an increased interest in art-focused and cultural trips. The majority of itineraries requested revolve around the South African art scene: Cape Town, Johannesburg, Marrakesh, Nairobi. People visit Africa for the animals and return for a deeper understanding of the people..
The Information Age has turned into the IT Escape Age. Travelers are looking for an experience that promotes wellness, an opportunity to escape the stress of daily life, disconnecting to reconnect with self, family and nature. Activities that enable travelers to reconnect with nature and specifically with oneself are growing in popularity. The ever-increasing stress in people's daily lives is forcing them to seek out travel experiences that are good for the soul, not pure travel consumption.