Planning an overseas holiday? Read this first.
7 International Travel Trends to Expect in 2023
Planning an overseas holiday? Read this first.
Are you planning a holiday overseas this year? International travel is well and truly back, but we’ve noticed that things are looking a little different when it comes to what is attracting us holiday-wise. Travel has inevitably changed, and some of the most popular trends of 2023 when it comes to vacations are a reflection of that.
From re-visiting old favourites to being more conscious about how much we pack, this is what you can expect when it comes to travel trends this year.
1. Packing light
We can guarantee that you know at least one person who has lost their suitcase on a recent trip. Travel might have mostly returned to pre-pandemic levels but COVID is still prevalent, which means that airport staff are struggling to keep up with the demand of increased suitcases passing through. The chances are that if you’re checking in a bag, it may end up taking a detour en route to your final destination, which is why more and more people are travelling light in 2023. Sure, it’s easy for short trips in summer destinations, but can you really travel with just a carry-on for a long-haul journey in winter? Or a trip that lasts more than a week or two? The answer is yes, with careful packing and a considered capsule wardrobe. Just remember to check all your liquids and make sure they’re under the acceptable limit.
The bottom line is, though, that sometimes you just have to check a suitcase. There are a few ways to mitigate your risk of losing a bag en route, which includes checking your bags through at the airport as early as possible, to give it as much chance of making it to the plane. Also, buy an Airtag and put it in your suitcase, so that in the event that it does go missing, you’ll know where it ends up.
2. Revisiting old favourites
You can call it nostalgia travelling or you can call it playing the hits, but many travellers in 2023 will choose to return to destinations they have loved. This trend is a result of a few years spent not on the road, and 2023 finally allowing people to make trips back to their favourite countries and cities. Maybe it’s for a family reunion, or maybe it’s a return to a place you hold dear and have missed. Forget new destinations in 2023 and go back to areas you know like the back of your hand. You’ll be able to head back to all your old haunts and see what has changed – and what has stayed the same.
3. Take the train
If you haven’t taken a holiday on rails before, make sure you schedule one for this year. 2023 is set to be the year of train travel, with several of the major journeys – including the once-in-a-lifetime Orient Express – already booked out for many dates. But this trend isn’t only about the mega, ultra-luxury itineraries, it’s also about getting in touch with slow travel and choosing to take your time to get to your destination. Train travel is meditative, easy and it’s better for the environment, using less carbon than flying. Sure, it might take you a little longer to get from city to city, but trains are better in the long run: no airports, no luggage restrictions (and no chance of a bag getting lost on transit) and so elegant. If you’re planning a European holiday, the continent has some of the best train connections around, and with Eurostar launching an overnight sleeper connecting London to Berlin, there’s never been a better time to catch the train.
4. Small screen inspiration
We know this isn’t exactly the point, but did anybody else watch the second season of The White Lotus and instantly start googling holidays in Sicily? Taking a holiday to the places where some of your favourite films and television shows were made is going to be a major trend in 2023. No wonder the Four Seasons in Taormina – and its equivalent in Hawaii, which served as the backdrop for season one of The White Lotus – is currently experiencing a boost in popularity. Everyone wants to go live it up like Portia in Italy.
Other popular hotels and destinations from culture include the Marina Bay Sands in Singapore, which served as the backdrop for Crazy Rich Asians, the Four Season Beverly Wilshire from the iconic Pretty Woman and the Park Hyatt Tokyo from Lost in Translation.
5. Boutique hotels with interesting backers
Have you heard about Chateau Voltaire? It’s the most popular hotel in Paris right now, and it’s run by the team behind denim brand Zadig & Voltaire. What about D’Une Ile, this quaint countryside retreat in France is owned by Paris’ sexiest restaurant group Septime. Then there’s the riad in Marrakech soon to be opened by the artists who have the chic ceramic brand LRNCE, or the little boutique hotel – and restaurant, naturally – opening in 2023 in Sydney’s Paddington from the James Beard award-winning chef Josh Niland.
The most interesting and covetable hotels in 2023 all have an interesting backstory and don’t come from the hotelier background you might expect.
6. Hotels in general
A major trend for 2023 more broadly is bringing back the luxurious side of travel. For those with big holiday budgets, years spent not going on holidays means that there’s a bit more money in the bank to splash on a holiday, and the numbers show that people are spending more on their vacations this year than previously. But even if you’re not blowing the budget on your next trip, travel as luxury is a major trend can be seen in the way that people are opting more and more to stay in hotels.
Forget the hassle of Airbnbs and apartment rentals, the ease of hotels – and the way they can feel like a big treat – is proving enticing. Hotels are experiencing high numbers of bookings this year as travellers look to secure one-of-a-kind, special experiences for their trip.
Staying in hotels is expensive, though, so our hack is to sign up to lots of newsletters with hotel deals because you never know when you can nab a discount. And our number one piece of advice is to book one night in a special hotel for your last night of the trip. It will send you out on a high and be the perfect end to your holiday.
8. Long trips
Thanks to the rise of remote working, taking a really long trip – from six weeks all the way up to six months – could be possible. Many companies are offering their employees the opportunity to work from anywhere for a period of time, and 2023 is the time to take advantage of that. Enjoying a normal work day… but from a small beachside town in Spain. What are you waiting for?
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