New Virtuoso Study Shows How Gen X Fuels Family Travel

Anna Kroupina, Open Jaw

A new survey by global luxury travel network Virtuoso found that today’s youth are blazing new trails as global citizens, impacting everything from their family and friends’ travel choices to new products, destinations and motivations for travel.  

The survey of Virtuoso's travel advisors specializing in family travel found that authenticity tops the list of emergent trends, with children driving travel decisions in second place. 

Multigenerational travel remains the most popular family trend, and multiple generations are the second most frequent travel companions behind the immediate family. Celebration travel is also growing, with one Virtuoso advisor even designing an Alaska trip for a grandfather who helicoptered his triplet grandchildren to a glacier for their 13th birthday - complete with cake.

While classic European destinations such as Italy, England and France remain popular with families, other less traditional places are on the rise. 

Already well-travelled, Gen Z involves itself in planning trips and wants to explore places such as Croatia, Morocco and Antarctica – destinations that likely were not considered vacation spots when their grandparents were the same age. 

Children today are travelling at younger ages to more distant destinations, and Virtuoso advisors report arranging family adventures with infants in tow. At times, preschool schedules become paramount even over parents’ work schedules in timing trips. 

Young globetrotters expect active immersion in local cultures, but still want downtime, says Virtuoso. Beach resort stays rank second on the list of family travel trends, with relaxing on the beach or poolside rating high as the most popular activity. Warm-weather locales such as Hawaii and Belize score highly as family destinations.  

Young travellers are also boldly requesting exclusive trip elements, often tailored to their personal interests. Virtuoso advisors say junior foodies have asked for Michelin-starred restaurants, even knowing the names of chefs at each establishment.

Virtuoso specialists share that family travel sales are strong for 2020: 57% say they expect sales to increase from 2019, while 42% envision sales will remain steady from last year. Just 1% foresee a minor dip for the coming year. 

Findings from the 2020 Virtuoso Family Travel Community survey:

Anna Kroupina

Anna Kroupina Journalist

Anna is OJ's newest member and she joins the team as a writer/reporter. She co-writes the daily news and covers events. Although she's new to the industry, pursuing a career path in travel/tourism has been a goal since her first family road trip to the Florida Keys sparked a desire to discover the world and this exhilarating, fast-paced industry.

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