Virtuoso has identified when, where and why the affluent will be traveling in 2022.

Virtuoso gathered insights from its travel advisors, partners and high net worth/ultra-high net worth clientele, through ongoing surveys and tapped into its data warehouse of more than $49.5 billion in transactions to reveal what’s next for travel in 2022.


Most importantly, Virtuoso found that there has been a shift in feelings toward travel. Eighty-five percent of travelers now say they are in a ‘ready to travel’ mindset.

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Now that a majority of people are ready to venture out, where are they going and what do they want to do? Virtuoso clients are going big and spending big. Seventy-six percent of its advisors who specialize in exclusive excursions have seen a recent increase in ultraluxe travel with African safaris, Caribbean islands, international city destinations and ocean cruises at the top of the travelers’ lists.

It’s good that travelers are willing to splurge, too, since travel inflation is real. Virtuoso bookings show future hotel rates are up 54 percent internationally and as much as 80 percent within the U.S., while airfares for this spring are up 19 percent over 2019.

Another welcome transformation within the travel space is that travel advisors are in demand.

Travelers have realized that it’s not easy to travel during a pandemic and that travel advisors can provide more peace of mind. Virtuoso reports that requests from people seeking an advisor grew 50 percent last year compared to 2020.

One of the biggest motivators to travel at the moment is planning to celebrate the missed milestones that happened during the pandemic. Multi-generational travel continues to drive family gatherings with Mexico and Caribbean islands holding the top spots for preferred destinations. When asked, 95 percent of advisors also believed celebration travel will continue to be a top trend through 2022.

Family with two children going on holiday.
Family with two children going on holiday. (photo via Halfpoint / iStock / Getty Images Plus)

People also care more about how they travel following the pandemic. Sustainability is top of mind in what Virtuoso calls the “the conscious comeback.” This is backed by research that shows 82 percent of travelers said the pandemic has made them want to travel more responsibly in the future and 78 percent said it’s important to choose travel companies that have a strong sustainability policy, moving them to seek out companies committed to what Virtuoso calls the three pillars of sustainability: protecting the planet, supporting local economies and celebrating cultures.

Seventy percent agreed that traveling sustainably enhances their vacation experience.

Virtuoso has also been tracking the hottest hotel openings to watch for this year as bookings begin to soar, up 119 percent compared to January of last year.

Two to look for are the Madrid EDITION and the Fifth Avenue Hotel opening in New York City. Both properties are opening this spring. The Waldorf Astoria Cancun will open in July, and Atlantis The Royal Dubai is expected to open in the third quarter of this year.

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