When you thought of what your holiday would look like in 2020, you probably didn’t imagine a staycation during a global pandemic.
Of course, it’s impossible to predict exactly what will happen – but an expert has pulled together some of the trends to look at what travelling could like 50 years from now.
The Great British Break Off report, put together by futurist Tom Cheesewright and holiday home manufacturer Willerby, says these are some of the things we can expect as we face climate change and the fall out from the pandemic.
The end of budget beach holidays
A few weeks at a beach resort might be popular right now but the report says that rising costs from climate change and new work patterns will end that.
Tom says: ‘Owning a home will increasingly be a dream for our forties, so we’ll be living longer in shared rentals and moving more frequently. We’ll feel less bound to our homes and with more flexible working too, our definition of a holiday – a period away from home with a fixed beginning and end – will shift.
‘One result of this will be the death of the big annual two-week beach holiday – most of us will only go abroad every four to five years, certainly long haul. But it’s not all as bad as it seems. Instead we’ll see more sabbatical style breaks going mainstream, with people escaping for much longer periods of two to three months.’
So expert a tour of South America or a season in Canada rather than a short break on the Costa Del Sol.
WFH (working from holiday)
We’re already getting more used to working from home and as we move towards a more flexible way of working, the report suggests it means we’ll have more holidays where work comes with us.
Tom says: ‘Your boss is likely to send you away with a creative project to focus on, rather than expecting your involvement in the day-to-day and answering emails. This will require more self-discipline as the beach beckons!
‘Holidays will also offer a chance to develop your side hustle, with more people retreating to write a book or blog or develop a new business idea.’
Help from your digital assistant
You might find work and holidays become more blended together so if you find you’re too busy, you’ll probably have a digital personal assistant to do all the boring jobs.
Tom explains that he thinks you’ll be able to just tell it where you want to go and everything will be packaged up for you in minutes.
He says: ‘Add to this the fact that more holidays will be closer to home, with autonomous vehicles to whisk you away, and the whole getaway experience will become much less stressful.’
Revival of faded coastal towns
Climate change and rising flood waters means that sadly, some destinations will no longer be accessible.
Tom predicts that this could see us turn back to beaches on our own shoes.
He says: ‘With many of our sunshine favourites out of reach, we’ll see a revival of dilapidated British coastal towns and investment in new attractions.
‘We’ll flock to places like Blackpool, Morecambe and Whitby, which still satisfy our traditional idea of a holiday – namely, a beach.’
And with climate change, going abroad will also become much more expensive, according to the report.
‘With the number of destinations reducing due to climate change, those that do choose to go abroad can expect to pay at least four times as much in 50 years’ time – another reason we won’t do this as frequently,’ Tom says.
‘Airlines could be a quarter of emissions by 2070, so taxes will increase to combat the environmental impact, driving prices even higher.
‘Not only will there be fewer places to go but smaller windows in which to visit, as places like Spain, Italy and Greece will simply be too hot in the summer. We may even see the structure of the school calendar changing, as the summer holiday boom will shift to Easter and autumn.’
With life getting less risky, Tom thinks we’ll be looking for something a little more adrenaline inducing on our holidays.
‘Holidays will be a chance to get our hearts racing and do things that feel genuinely dangerous,’ he says.
‘We’ll swap yoga and spin classes for white water rafting, scaling mountains and wild swimming. Expect major investment in attractions that make us feel alive – and afraid.’
3D printed holiday homes
With more and more of us working in busy cities, holidays will be a chance to get back to nature.
Tom predicts a trend for holiday homes that are embedded into the ground (Hobbit-style!) and at one with the environment.
He adds: ‘The trend for 3D printed houses will have extended to holiday homes and we’ll create looks to resemble natural local materials like slate or timber.
‘There will be living walls where holidaymakers can pick their own herbs, integrated solar panels and on-site water processing.
‘But we won’t give up luxuries entirely. There will still be an array or entertainment options cleverly hidden away to access on our own terms.’
The lasting COVID effect
Even 50 years from how, the pandemic could still have an impact on how we travel.
Tom explains: ‘Sadly, the current global pandemic won’t be the last we’ll experience in the next 50 years, so the influence on holiday behaviour will be lasting.
‘One great advantage is employers recognising it’s possible to work from anywhere in the world, so we’ll stand a much greater chance of success when we put in that request to decamp to a remote cottage in Scotland for a month.’
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