Travel Trends 2019

Part 1: Undertourism

In this day and age, many travelers are discovering that tourism is all about the quality of the experience and, as a consequence, undertourism is now emerging in different destinations, framing these destinations as peaceful, yet exciting, alternatives to overcrowded, tourist-centric cities.

Overtourism has now forced many to rethink marketing. Travel companies are discovering that a handful of affluent travelers are a better than a horde of cash-strapped tourists. And that having the right strategy will increase the high spender’s likelihood to return to these destinations.

We have already seen several destinations adopt the undertourism philosophy. Oslo positioning itself as an alternative for the overcrowded European cities such as Paris. Puerto Rico is another case in practice, portraying the island as an alternative to crowded Caribbean islands.

Over the last decade, overtourism has clearly been on the rise here in Los Cabos. We are seeing an increase of cruise ship arrivals every year with half a million visitors forecasted for 2020. There has been a significant expansion in new hotel room inventory in both All Inclusive and Luxury properties. Riu, for example, recently added over 900 rooms. Many new All Inclusive resorts such as Gran Velas, Garza Blanca and Le Banc Resort are making their appearance, as well as Luxury resorts such as Four Seasons, Aman and Park Hyatt all wanting to take advantage of this growing momentum.

On the other hand, Todos Santos and La Paz are fast becoming alternative choices for travelers who love Baja but want to avoid the hustle-bustle of Los Cabos. Todos Santos boasts charming hotels such as Hotel San Cristobal and the Todos Santos Inn, bringing touches of luxury wrapped in simplicity and relaxation. And many new restaurants such as Jazamango and Pacifica giving tourists a unique culinary experience.

La Paz offers everything and more with exciting restaurants, beautiful beaches such as Balandra and day trips to the stunning island, Isla de Espiritu Santos. La Paz caters to travelers looking for unforgettable experiences such as island hopping and swimming with whale sharks. La Paz guests enjoy these activities in absolute peace and privacy without the large groups you find in Los Cabos.

Many tour operators, such as Intrepid Travel, are also now addressing this overtourism situation by offering for example “not hot lists” and unique travel destinations and with. Nowadays, with so many hidden gems and unbeaten paths yet to be discovered throughout the world, it all comes down to where you look and when to go.

By Thomas Belaen

Thomas Belaen
Artifex Hospitality

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