2016 was undoubtedly a year of big surprises with the UK voting to leave the European Union followed by Donald Trump’s election as US president. So, what shocks will 2017 hold? And how are they likely to affect the travel industry?
The biggest impact of these events so far has been the dramatic fall in the value of the pound against key currencies, particularly the US dollar and euro. Most commentators believe this will push up the prices of holidays over the next year.
Fortunately this does not seem to have dented the British population’s love of holidaying overseas, and there are plenty of reasons for optimism across the major sectors such as cruise, touring and adventure, long-haul, short-haul, ancillaries and aviation.
All of these areas are explored in detail in this look ahead to 2017, as we examine the major developments, trends and selling points across each of these important travel sectors.
There are a host of new cruise ships launching next year, including new vessels from MSC, Viking, Princess, Norwegian Cruise Line and Silversea, which should prove of interest to customers.
The touring and adventure sector also continues to grow as more exciting destinations are opened up due to new flights and improved political relationships with countries such as Iran.
Key long-haul destinations, such as the US, the Far East and Latin America, should benefit from the introduction of new routes and flights, while intense competition between airlines is expected to help keep short-haul prices down.
It will also be a big year for theme parks with Dubai staking a claim for a bigger share of this business, while Orlando’s long-established parks offer some exciting developments of their own.
After so many surprises this year, it takes quite a lot of bravery to make any sort of prediction these days. But several leading industry figures have given their views about what may happen in 2017.