The International Traveler: Their Special Needs
By David Benton Vice President and General Manager, The Rittenhouse Hotel | October 28, 2008
The global travel market is one of the fastest and dynamic growth businesses on the planet. Not only are business travelers jetting around the globe attending to, and managing the globalization of commerce, but leisure travel is just as robust as the so-called 'tourists' look for more adventure and uniqueness in their limited free time.
How has the travel and hospitality industry adjusted to meet this insatiable demand for both business and leisure travel?
It was not too long ago, when the majority of business travelers visited London, New York, Paris, Rome, Hong Kong and Washington. Just visit any major airport and read the "Arrivals and Departures" boards to see the myriad of destinations that business travelers are flying in and out of...Surabaya, Yangon, Maputo, Cabinda, Porto Alegre Magnitigorsk... to name but a few of the destinations reachable by air.
Leisure travelers want a more fulfilling experience than going to an amusement park, strolling along a boardwalk or simply soaking up the sun. Climbing Macchu Picchu, diving on an ancient shipwreck in the South China Sea, or taking cooking lessons in a villa in Provence are today, quite typical of the experiences that travelers are looking for to maximize their free time with interesting content.
The enormous expansion of airline routes, cruise destinations and specialty travel operators and agencies has made what was once a dream vacation, become reality, as these travel-related businesses recognize and understand the new needs of the international traveler.
Not only have the transportation options become plentiful together with well-qualified travel specialists to offer expert assistance, but the variety of accommodation options has also multiplied.