Canopy by Hilton Reykjavik City Center
Photograph ©2018 by Brian Cohen.

Hilton Forecasts Emerging Trends of Travelers in 2022

Hint: the current 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic caused many of the changes in travel.

After the current 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic flipped the travel industry upside down and inside out over the course of the past two years, a report was released from Hilton which forecasts what are some of the interesting trends to expect from travelers — as well as the travel industry itself — in 2022.

Hilton Forecasts Emerging Trends of Travelers in 2022

Hilton La Romana
Photograph ©2019 by Brian Cohen.

The complete global trends report from the multinational lodging company — The 2022 Traveler: Emerging Trends and the Redefined Travelera Report from Hilton — was just released yesterday, Thursday, November 4, 2021; and it does not just cover the Hilton Honors frequent guest loyalty program. The report covers even more insights about the changed traveler who has reassessed his or her priorities and loyalties — including preferences pertaining to experiences, food and beverage, pet-friendly travel, and health and wellness as only four of many examples of topics in the future of travel over the next year.

  • Amid the chaos of the current 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic, people have embraced efficiencies in many aspects of life and will be seeking similar conveniences — most of them based on technology — as the workplace and office are undergoing a period of redefining; and travelers will gravitate more towards experiences which are convenient and with as little contact as possible.
  • The focus on health and holistic wellness overall will extend far beyond the fitness center — especially at places which address those concerns — and travelers will be seeking more grounding and balance in their schedules.
  • New and existing passions — which have led to tastes and preferences that have become refined yet less formal — have been nurtured; and people will likely have those passions accompany them during their travels in their searches for culinary experiences, fitness trends, and other forms of unique experiences while traveling.
  • Due to family members and friends being separated as a result of the current 2019 Novel Coronvirus pandemic, a new sense of caring has emerged and is expected to strengthen — which will lead to the prioritization of travel based on reunions and reconnecting relationships in person.
  • Although people will party more, they will generally do so in smaller groups.
  • People will care more about efforts pertaining to sustainability, community, and environmental issues while they are traveling and dining — and they are expected to strengthen their loyalty with brands, companies, and organizations who share and align with their core values.
  • Pets will travel more with their owners, as an extra bag will be packed for them — and companies in the travel industry will need to pay more attention to considering the comfort and happiness of pets.
Hilton Tallinn Park Estonia
Photograph ©2017 by Brian Cohen.

The time to connect and create loyal customers in every business sector is now, according to the aforementioned report. Other trends in loyalty — especially with Hilton — include:

  • Listening is key: With the constantly changing environment, listening to our guests is more vital than ever before. For instance, Hilton is investing more in all-inclusive resorts — knowing that this area of travel is growing in demand and importance amongst Hilton Honors members — as well as travelers in general.
  • Providing more options: Recognizing that its customers are looking for more choices and valued benefits, Hilton Honors is beginning to roll out a global enhancement to one of its most valued benefits — complimentary, space-available room upgrades. Members who have earned Gold and Diamond elite status will be notified of an upgrade 72 hours in advance of their stay and be able to select their upgraded room via the Hilton Honors mobile software application program 36 hours before checking in to the hotel or resort property.
  • Increasing flexibility: Hilton has recommitted to its loyalty members by continuing to provide flexibility to meet guests at where they are. As an industry leader, Hilton Honors announced that members can expect to retain their points and elite status for an extended period of time — as well as earn elite status more easily in 2022.
  • Adding more ease and efficiency: To provide enhanced convenience to guests, the Hilton Honors mobile software application program continues to expand to allow members to take advantage of contactless check-in, Digital Key and in-room control — and as a new feature, Digital Key Share is beginning to roll out to allow Hilton Honors members to seamlessly share their Digital Key with travel companions safely and securely, to help them get to their rooms even faster.

Final Boarding Call

Hilton Bogotá Corferias
Photograph ©2019 by Brian Cohen.

SInce the current 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic officially began, I have always believed that the travel community — and people in general, for that matter — greatly overreacted to it…

…but rather than focus on the obvious negative aspects which resulted from that perceived overreaction on my part, many positive aspects have indeed emerged — including a renewed appreciation for many things which were essentially taken for granted prior to the start of the pandemic; and perhaps some lessons which were learned to prevent us as a society from committing the same mistakes and blunders in the future.

In the meantime, the possibilities of advantages in this new age of travel — some of which are addressed in the aforementioned report from Hilton — is something to which we can look forward…

All photographs ©2017, ©2018, and ©2019 by Brian Cohen.

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