If you are a tour operator then you know that part of running a successful tour operation is being able to stay on top of changing trends and values in the tourism industry. The modern tourism industry is radically different than the industry of 20, 10 or even 5 years ago. As tourism trends change, you must also learn how to quickly adapt and take advantage of them in order to increase your clientele, your exposure, and your overall profits. The following are 3 current tourism trends that you really need to know in order to make the most of your tour operation business.

People are booking more last minute tour options than ever before

While people still do book in advance, they tend to reserve booking a tour in advance for multi-day tours such as expansive tours of a city or other types of sightseeing packages. Last minute bookings, including same-day bookings, are more common than ever before, thanks to a rise in mobile devices that make it possible to buy tour bookings as early as the morning you want to take a tour. You can stay on top of this trend by offering a variety of same-day tour options and by accommodating last minute bookings whenever you can.

More people are looking for new experiences over tried and true tourist attractions

Those tried and true tourist attractions and destinations are not going to go anywhere, and places like the Eiffel Tower in Paris or Times Square in NYC will still be visited by millions of people every year. But as far as tourism trends go, more and more people are looking for new, interesting experiences that have a local or authentic twist to them rather than big-name, popular and usually very crowded tourist attractions. People are more interested in seeing smaller museums, local hang-outs, and other unique experiences that will help them form memories that go beyond typical tourist snapshots at places everyone else visits when they go to that particular country or city. You can stay on top of this trend by exploring options for unique tours and experiences that you can then market along with packages that visit more standard attractions.

Travelers prefer local lodgings over generic hotels

This tourism trend has been building and building for years and it has finally overtaken some sectors of the tourism industry: modern travelers, by and large, prefer local lodgings rather than expansive, well-known international hotel brands. This doesn’t necessarily rule out hotels altogether, but some travelers would prefer staying in a small, local hotel in the thick of things than in a generic, 100-story hotel simply because it’s a well-known name. Other local lodgings such as rental apartments and Air BNBs are also popular, especially for multi-day trips when travelers will want to be able to cook their own food, use laundry services, and other features that aren’t always available with a hotel.

If you keep these above 3 top trends in the tourism industry in mind, you will find that your tour operating business will be a cut above the rest.

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