Virtuoso Luxe Report Finds Families Are Looking for Adventure


From Antarctica To Rwanda, Virtuoso®'s Luxe Report Shows Families Seeking Adventures In Surprising Destinations

NEW YORK, May 15, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- As summer approaches, global luxury travel network Virtuoso® reports that families are voyaging far and wide in search of experiences that transform their hectic daily lives into memories of a lifetime. Recognized as a trend predictor, the 2019 Virtuoso Luxe Report surveyed its affiliated advisors to discover where, why and how families are traveling this summer.

Top 5 Ways Generation Z Impacts Family Travel

For those who thought Millennials were the most influential generation, guess what, there's a new kid in town: Generation Z. Defined as young people born beginning in 2000 (those 19 and younger), Gen Z is set to comprise 32 percent of the global population of 7.7 billion in 2019, while Millennials will account for 31.5 percent. One study puts Gen Z's buying power at more than $500 billion. They may be young, but Gen Zers have strong opinions and exert considerable influence over travel decisions by:

  • Influencing others' choices via word of mouth, social media and reviews
  • Involving themselves in planning trips
  • Persuading others to embrace their desire for more active experiences  
  • Seeking out unusual destinations
  • Looking for highly visual locations and activities that highlight their exciting lives on social media

Virtuoso Analysis:

Gen Zs have a great deal of clout over family and peer travel decisions. Worldlier at an earlier age than previous generations, they were born with a passport in hand and are determined to explore. The more off-the-beaten-path, the better, as social media factors significantly in their drive for more unique experiences.

Top 10 Family Travel Trends          

Active or adventure trips                
6. Mother/daughter or father/son trips
2. Multigenerational trips                      
7. Cultural immersion
3. Beach resort stays                         
8. Ocean cruising                              
4. Celebration travel                           
9. Educational trips                           
5. Touring (guided or private)               
10. River cruises

Virtuoso Analysis: 

Adventure trips rose to number one from second place last year, bolstered by travelers' excitement for active experiences. Travel with multiple generations, the top overall trend in Virtuoso's 2019 Luxe Report, is second on the family-specific list. Family trips are perfect for celebrating milestones such as birthdays and anniversaries and bonding over shared experiences. Skip-Gen travel is also on the rise, with grandparents eager to educate, explore and leave a lasting legacy with their grandchildren, while working parents stay behind back home. While sun-and-sand travel falls to third place, it remains popular for family togetherness and as a means of disconnecting. Tours, particularly private ones tailored to a family's interests, help transform trips into educational experiences, helping create the next generation of global citizens. 

Top 10 Hottest Family Destinations

1. Italy    
6. South Africa
2. Mexico   
7. Costa Rica
3. Hawaii 
8. France       
4. Orlando, FL     
9. Dominican Republic
5. England     
10. Spain

Virtuoso Analysis: 

Italy has remained the family favorite for 10 years in a row, and Europe's overall appeal is strong, with England, France and Spain also appearing on the list. Families looking to unwind under sunny skies are heading to Mexico, Hawaii and the Dominican Republic. With its abundance of theme parks and warm weather, Orlando is a natural choice for families. Dovetailing with the adventure travel trend, families are voyaging to destinations noted for active experiences such as South Africa and Costa Rica.

Top 10 Unconventional Family Destinations

1. Iceland   
6. Japan
2. Galapagos Islands
7. Egypt  
3. Cuba   
8. Bhutan
4. Antarctica   
9. Rwanda
5. Morocco          
10. India

Virtuoso Analysis: 

Exploring new destinations is the top travel motivator in the Luxe Report, and seeking unusual places is a Gen Z priority, so it's no surprise families are searching for lesser-known and more remote parts of the world. In particular, pristine destinations such as Iceland (which has topped the category three consecutive years), the Galapagos Islands and Antarctica are trending. The desire for authenticity and deep cultural interactions is driving families to places such as Cuba and Bhutan. And, well-traveled families are also moving beyond tried-and-true spots to experience Asia and Africa with six of the top 10 unconventional destinations on those continents.

Travel advisors from Virtuoso-affiliated agencies in North America, Latin America, Asia-Pacific, the Caribbean, Europe, Africa and the Middle East shared their viewpoints in the 2019 Luxe Report, uncovering the year's most significant trends. To find a family travel specialist to lend their expertise or plan future trips, including the use of Virtuoso's exclusive Wanderlist® process to create a customized wish list, visit www.virtuoso.com.

About Virtuoso

Virtuoso® is the leading international travel agency network specializing in luxury and experiential travel. This by-invitation-only organization comprises over 1,000 travel agency partners with 20,000 elite travel advisors in 50 countries throughout North America, Latin America, the Caribbean, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Africa and the Middle East. Drawing upon its preferred relationships with over 1,800 of the world's best hotels and resorts, cruise lines, airlines, tour companies and premier destinations, the network provides its upscale clientele with exclusive amenities, rare experiences and privileged access. More than (U.S.) $26.4 billion in annual travel sales makes Virtuoso a powerhouse in the luxury travel industry. For more information, visit www.virtuoso.com.


Photo credit: Lanthia Resort, Sardinia

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