Travel Trends for 2019

Year of the pig is the last in the twelve-year cycle of the lunar calendar. According to one myth, the pig was late because he overslept. While another story said he had to rebuild his home because someone fucked it up, so when he arrived, he was the last one and could only take the twelfth place on the table.

For Filipinos, this year’s travel trends will be (in many ways) like the pig’s sentimental nature and its innate attachment to the earth. It will revolve around a theme of looking back, a nod to nostalgia, and reconciliation. 


Stylish in Transit

Gone are the days when we feel cool and kick-ass traveling in flip flops and beer shirts. Stylish travel outfits are making its way back into the scene, but more than sophisticated taste level, it will also be smart—Today’s technology will enable us to choose comfort without compromising style. So we could walk from the airport and head straight for an impromptu realtime IG story update.

Picture the iconic travel looks of Marlon Brando and Grace Kelly, only in gore-tex/heattech materials striding the aisle down the economy cabin.


Conscious Travel

A generation of “woke” travelers are making trip decisions based on whichever has less carbon footprints. Plus, more and more travelers on social media are starting to be vocal about their choices on where to go, what to book, and what establishments to expose for ruthlessly lambasting nature both directly or indirectly. Cove Manila and Okada were given a sampler, a juicy dry run just before the new year starts. It was when a netizens collectively burst their (ahem) balloon plans and savagely crushing their PR team. A perfect case study on “How To Lose Your PR Job.”

Simple yet mindful, is the way to go this year. 


Existential Escapes

A higher form of realization will start happening, or for all we know, already have started. This is when travelers stop spending most of waking hours on their phones and cameras while on the trip. There will be no blow-by-blow social media updates, no pre-curated OOTD, no extensively sanitized content, absolutely off the grid.

Being stripped of  modern nuisances is when we truly appreciate the beauty of what really matters—BEING PRESENT. Imagine MTV Unplugged but for your egocentric gratification (let’s confuse the kids nowadays).

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Back to Basics

I once told a Kenyan friend from Nairobi that I booked a tour in the Maasai Mara, to sleep in the wild, under the stars, without toilet, in the tune of $180. She gave me the sassiest look of repulsion “No aircon? No roof? Shitting in the bush? Honey we just came from there! My people took generations to get where we are now!”

Aside from the beach camping and mountain climbing, an emerging trend of farm stay tours might make it in package options fliers. As a generation of kids who have never experienced a life without computer is starting to earn and travel on their own. For them such novelty is worth spending vacation leave and long weekends. Also, there are adults who probably just had enough of of big cities.


Second Shots

Travel will no longer be just about crossing-out countries in your long bucket list, as we will be going back to revisit old routes and give a past love another chance. 

It will be a year of rediscovering old favorites, as (ahem) older or should I say, more seasoned travelers will be smacked hard by nostalgia and will be squeezing trips to return to this one special destination that we visited some decades ago. Or perhaps reignite an interest, an old forgotten love like trekking, or feeling young and vulnerable. #10yearChallenge  


The Family Thing

We have traveled solo, we explored the world with friends, we went on adventures with our special someone. This year, we will be booking trips with our families. More than traveling together for the sake of getting together, it will genuinely be in the spirit of togetherness–and it is no longer corny.

Multi-generational travel will be seen more. So destinations offering a wide range of activities from theme parks for the kids to senior friendly facilities will create buzz.    


Dark Tourism

Enough of pastel walls, candy colored frames, and rainbow farting unicorns. Travelers will reconcile what is superficially beautiful with the less sparkly reality, and to some extent will venture with the brute, the unspoken, even the macabre.

We have flown all over, and for some it will be time to be at peace with being grounded. We will embark on these trips to keep our feet planted and explore the side that we have consciously hid out of plain sight.

Netflix recently served this on the table with the series presented by journalist David Farrier, it just opened trapdoors to gutsy souls seeking thrill.


Roots Route

In this age of genetic advancement, heritage has never been so clear and accessible. DNA testing is just a spit and a courier away, and companies like 23andMe and My Heritage is making it possible to trace where your ancestors came from. That being said, it is high time to pay our roots a visit.

We shall be blazing these “Heritage Trails” as a form of personal journey and being connected our own identities. 


The Decline of “Influencers”

Like what happened to blogging, the “influencer” culture may have reached its peak, particularly on Instagram. Peak is a point followed by a drastic decline. The mighty and powerful may have started descending from their self-built pedestals, as more and more followers are developing stronger senses detecting what is genuine from what’s pure crap.

Oversaturation of sponsored posts is tarnishing the industry’s reputation. Audience are not buying it, clients are realizing that numbers does not necessarily translate to business, and at the end of the day authenticity, quality, and DIGNITY will always prevail.

There I said it. 

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1 Comment
  • Milet Miranda

    January 21, 2019 at 2:27 am

    Yung number 9 talaga eh! Ate Gurl, you’re cancelled!

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