How Your Bed and Breakfast Can Learn From New Travel Trends *

Trends by their very definition are constantly changing.  Even predicting these changes has become a trend.

The travel industry is very much at the mercy of traveler behavior and the preferences of today’s guests.  Thus, societies trends become travel trends.  People expect their accommodation to provide the same luxuries and freedom of choice that they have at home.

Travelers aren’t the only party driving change.  New technology and changing business strategies make a difference too.  Bed & breakfast owners should stay current with trends in these areas and prepare for what might happen next.

Some things might change within the industry, however the core values of hospitality and customer service will remain bedrock principles.  How your business responds to new and changing trends is critical if you want to continue growing your reservations and revenue.

Brands that are too generic or impersonal will suffer.  Travelers are now looking for unique, authentic, and genuinely personal experiences.

We will explain a number of current and future trends your small property needs to be aware of.

How can your B & B stay relevant?

The most important trends are the ones which impact whether or not a traveller chooses your property for their stay..

To ensure the regular flow of bookings, don’t ignore the following:

  • Mobile bookings are increasing
  • Social media influences decision-making
  • Asian and Asia Pacific travelers come with a unique set of preferences
  • Multi-channel distribution is a necessity
  • Technology is driving businesses decisions
  • Greater affordability for travel is bringing new markets into play
  • Travelers demand enriching and fulfilling vacations
  • Travelers will spend more for unique experiences


Bed and breakfast trends that are here to stay

Trends become the new normal, as they gain acceptance more people join in and the trend becomes main stream.

Following are examples of trends that are common now and are expected to remain so include:

Immersive culinary tourism
Travellers around the globe have fallen into the habit of displaying their eclectic and artful meals on Instagram, which has made it trendy to grab luxury dishes from the places that people are visiting.

Rather than simply opting for the most elaborate meal, travellers are searching for the most authentic options.  They want to experience the flavor and culture of the region.  Take advantage of this trend by offering farm-to-table meals at your B&B featuring local ingredients and cultural recipes that highlight your destination.

Communal gathering spaces
Past travelers sought respite from others at private hotels where they could relax and unwind.  Today however, people are plugged into technology and disconnected from real conversation.  Thus more travelers crave personal interaction with others while abroad.  Community focused lodgings hotels are all the rage in the hottest destinations.

Create a gathering space at your property where guests can mix and mingle in a comfortable setting.

Voice-assisted technology
Voice-assisted technology, such as Siri on the iPhone or Alexa on the Amazon Echo, is the latest technology trend that is taking over the travel industry.

Travelers are becoming more dependent on these devices in their homes and lives.  It’s no surprise to see this extend into their holidays or business trips.  You can boost your guest satisfaction ratings by including a voice-assisted device in each guest room at your property.  These systems can control functions such as the thermostat, controlling entertainment systems, raising the blinds and more.

Voice tech is also having an impact on the way travellers are researching and booking accommodation.

Wellness activities for active travelers
Increasingly, travelers are going on wellness trips focused on restoring their minds, bodies and spirits.  You should consider this trend when creating packages and add-on options for your B&B.

Morning yoga might be nice. But chances are that many of your guests may also love a guided hiking, mountain biking or kayaking tour as well.

Some examples of how wellness travel fits into the grand scheme of things:

  • Stop smoking retreats
  • Men’s health
  • Healthy mind and emotion healing holidays
  • Eat-well detox holidays
  • Zen and adrenaline
  • Family-wellness holidays
  • Workplace wellness
  • Eco-friendly wellness retreats

As wellness grows as a social movement, there will be new trends emerging to change the way people interact with their health and daily lives.

Solo travelers
Solo travelers are a rapidly growing demographic.  As people become comfortable embarking their own great adventure, they are seeking places that will provide unique opportunities. Your Bed & Breakfast should create events, offer common spaces and encourage communal eating to attract solo travelers.

Women are traveling more on their own.  To challenge themselves and embrace their independence.  Women are more likely to associate wellness with climbing Machu Picchu than a traditional spa weekend.  Today’s average adventure traveller is a 48-year-old woman.

Not every trend is going to revolutionize the way you do business, but you can expect that these B&B trends will be worth your investment.


Future bed and breakfast trends

We all wish that we could see into the future.  Nothing could better prepare us for success.

Most trends build steadily over time.  Personalization and data are two important factors to focus on, as well as a society that is becoming more environmentally conscious.

Here’s a full list of future trends you should be able to rely on:

  • Smart rooms – Travellers are willing to pay a lot for convenience.
  • Green hotels – Such is the environmental awareness it now affects traveller choices.
  • Multicultural employment – Lodgings are increasingly international.
  • High density of technology – Every stage of our journey is now ruled by tech.
  • Experiences over materials – Travelers want meaningful experiences rather than material objects.
  • Cool and luxurious brands – Instagrammable properties are becoming more and more popular


The reason so many properties are striving to be ‘different’ is because the homogenization of society marches on.  There are changing demographics as rising nations affluence encourages travel opportunities.  Wealthy travelers crave even more novelty, creativity, and over-the-top experiences.


Technology trends for the B&B industry

Technology is the industry area showing accelerated development.  Both in terms of the tech that properties and guests use before, during, and after their stay.

Digital media and technology is constantly changing how you present your bed & breakfast business and get people interested.

As they age and become more affluent, more millennials are also traveling today.  They will comprise 50% of global travelers this year.

Millennials are tech-savvy and are helping other generations embrace technology also.  The result is that more travelers will use technology to life easier, your bed & breakfast has to keep up with tech trends.


The most important tech trends:

  • Voice technology
  • Drone technology
  • Flexible check-in and check-out
  • New ways to pay
  • Artificial intelligence
  • Distribution tech
  • Virtual reality and augmented reality
  • Video marketing


Common lodging industry trends

The travel industry is huge with too many trends flying around to keep track of.  Ultimately find your niche and own it, giving your guests the best experience possible.

Here are a few trends that you are already familiar with but shouldn’t be forget:

  • Millennial travelers

Millennials live in the moment, they can be impulsive, demanding and adventurous.  Their personalities desire experiences over material possessions. This impacts the tourism industry, adapting to please one of its emerging market segments.

  • Exclusive experiences

Intimacy, privacy and a sense of escape is what travelers are gravitating towards.  They seek an escape from the buzz to find experiences that feel unique to them.  However, you don’t have to be a remote property to attract these guests.

Create distinct spaces, or offering additional services may be your solution.  Balance this by offering a local experience that guests won’t be able to find at home.

  • Bleisure trips

‘Bleisure’ is the name given to trips which comprise both business and leisure activities.  It’s a behavior that has grown in popularity and become more common.

Millennials embrace taking ‘bleisure’ vacations.  Millennials that travel for work are opting to stay a little longer to experience cities at their leisure.  Many millennials are opting for careers where travel is more likely.

Bleisure travellers in general are going to look for spontaneous services, speed, and convenience to make the most of their time.


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