20 Jan

2014: From a new world middle class to cocktails on tap!

With the start of a new year comes a host of predictions, what’s hot and what’s not, as well as emerging trends.

According to the ITB World Travel Trend Report 2013-2014, outbound travel is set to grow by between four and five per cent as the world economy gradually improves. Emerging markets such as Brazil and China will remain major players, but both Europe and North America are expected to show solid growth too. Interestingly, Russia was Europe’s fastest growing outbound travel market in 2013 (Ref: World Travel Monitor), with a 12 per cent increase in the first eight months of last year.

Driving the emerging markets is the rise of a ‘new world middle class’ experiencing first time visits abroad. This figure is likely to double by 2030, resulting in 1.5 billion more middle class people eager to voyage around the world and change the picture of international travel for the long term; an emerging trend that seems to be in line with the UN World Tourism Organisation’s claim that global tourism spend will double by 2020 to $1.6 trillion.

The travel industry needs to get ready for an escalation in mobile bookings through Smartphones. IPK’s World Travel Monitor report underlines the industry must gear up for the onslaught of high-speed travel decision making. Mobile bookings are growing fast and although they currently only account for 2 per cent of the market share, compared to online bookings with a dominant share of 65 per cent and bookings through travel agents standing at 24 per cent, activity is set to intensify.

Allegra Strategies ‘Eating out in the UK’ report predicts the eating out market will be worth £79 billion by the end of this year. Apparently 19 million adults dine out at least once a week, which is an increase of two million since 2012.

Restaurant magazine also has an extensive list of what’s set to make it big this year – a few of the key highlights include main chains continuing to launch spin offs, such as La Tasca’s ‘unbranded’ Bellota Bar of Tapas. Slowly trending into the UK bar and restaurant scene is cocktails on tap, due to its popularity in the US and the recently launched American themed restaurant Far Rockaway in Shoreditch with cocktails on draft, this is one to watch.

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