How the world plans to travel in 2024 - Hindustan Times
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How the world plans to travel in 2024

Jan 02, 2024 11:16 PM IST

We spoke to industry experts and influential voices in the space to determine how the travel landscape will take shape in 2024.

Looking back at 2023, one thing is clear: it has been a big year of travel and more importantly, a big year of exuberant travel trends. From taking a deeper look at indigenous cultures to the rise of experiential luxury travel, we spoke to industry experts and influential voices in the space to determine how the travel landscape will take shape in 2024.

Artificial intelligence is expected to enhance customer interactions and provide real-time assistance.
Artificial intelligence is expected to enhance customer interactions and provide real-time assistance.

Set-jetting

The burgeoning trend is set to gain even greater momentum as viewers’ queue up to rediscover their favourite moments from films and TV shows. In the Indian context, last year offered fertile ground in terms of content — with travel to Ooty seeing a rise thanks to Riverdale in The Archies being situated here and a fresh spurt of summer trips to Kashmir after a song in Rocky Aur Rani Kii Prem Kahani was shot in Gulmarg. The same has been seen for the sixth season of The Crown that dropped recently.

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AI Travel

Artificial intelligence is expected to enhance customer interactions and provide real-time assistance. “Indian online travel portal ixigo pioneered AI and machine learning for a decade and are now utilising generative AI for customer-centric tools. PLAN by ixigo leverages OpenAI, evolving to include events, social trends, and real-time sharing,” says Rajnish Kumar of ixigo. Resorts and hotels are fast adopting AI for remote guest assistance, mobile keys and AI-powered facial recognition for seamless check-ins.

Astro tourism

The country is witnessing a surge in stargazing activities and initiatives. In 2024, Hanle village in Ladakh is set to become India’s first Night Sky Sanctuary. Of late, Rajasthan has also seen a spike in demand for stargazing events in Jaipur while Benital village in Uttarakhand is undergoing development for astro tourism. An astro park in Madhya Pradesh’s Mandu is in the works, too. It’s anticipated that tourist hubs such as Maharashtra, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu, too, will increasingly promote the potential of astro tourism.

Luxury rail trips

The trend of luxury train travel in India is experiencing a remarkable surge, driven by heightened climate consciousness and a desire for immersive experiences. Travel booking platforms note a growing demand for opulent rail journeys, and in 2024, the luxury train sector is set to reach new heights. “Notably, iconic Indian luxury trains like the Maharajas’ Express, Palace on Wheels and the Golden Chariot, will remain high in demand,” says a representative of Luxury Trains India which offers luxury train booking services in India.

Spiritual tourism

According to the Indian Accommodation Barometer 2023 report (by Booking.com and Statista), spiritual tourism is keeping hoteliers excited. With Ayodhya’s Ram Mandir set to be inaugurated on January 22, OYO envisions the city rivalling spiritual destinations such as Vatican City and Mecca. A Thomas Cook India-SOTC survey found that 55% respondents preferred religious or spiritual tours. Of those surveyed, 22% seek professional rejuvenation through spiritual trips, while 21% did so after weddings or childbirth.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR
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    Sneha Chakraborty writes on travel, food, culture, gadgets and lifestyle for the Daily Entertainment and Lifestyle supplement, HT City.

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