What's the Future of Travel?

by Sunni Chapman



As we look into our crystal ball, we forecast small group trips becoming a big trend in 2018. You might be thinking: “Wait, wait. Aren’t groups a bit passé?” Yes and no.

Impersonal groups – where travelers feel smooshed together like sardines – are attracting fewer and fewer buyers. But, even as big bus trips fade in popularity, more intimate shared escapes are a thriving market. Just consider the uptick in interest in river cruising in the last few years!

Today’s travelers yearn to feel connected during a trip.

Today’s travelers want to slow down, savoring their time.

Today’s travelers long to make new friends on their voyages.

Small group travel – when thoughtfully designed and impeccably executed – can satisfy travelers’ hunger for connection. This October 15th – 26th, we’ll host a Women’s Group with Mary Jo Gregory of Northside Travel. Mary Jo will escort this group through TuscanyLe Marche and Umbria.

Having once brought a group to Umbria, Mary Jo knows firsthand how POWERFULwomen traveling together can be. Her Umbria ladies became fast friends – sharing life’s ups and downs alongside lots of laughs. Travel nourished a bond that would never have blossomed otherwise.

To discover more about small group trips for women, read our interview with Mary Jo:

WHY WOMEN'S GROUP TRAVEL?

An Interview with Mary Jo Gregory 

image

HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN WORKING IN TRAVEL?

I will have to admit over 30 years! This puts me in my 70s, but -- in my mind -- I am in my 50s. I’m sure you have heard the saying: age is just a state of mind.

WHY DID YOU DECIDE TO CREATE A WOMEN’S GROUP?

There is a market for sophisticated, culturally-focused experiences that cater to women. Many women are single, divorced or widowed like I am. In other cases, some women are married to a man who can’t physically travel or doesn’t enjoy travel. Something special happens when women travel together. I led a group of women to Italy some years ago. The women’s ages ranged from in their 50s to one women in her 80s! There was no hesitation to share our experiences and life stories together. My favorite memory was one woman celebrating her 80th birthday in the piazza in Assisi. As we sang happy birthday to her, a gorgeous young Italian man came up and gave her a kiss. Ahhhh, she remembers that birthday with such fondness! The trip was magical. So, I want to conjure this magic again for other women.

WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO PICK ITALY FOR YOUR GROUP?

My soul comes alive when I am in Italy. I must have been an Italian countess in my past life! No one comes back from Italy without raving about this country. Italy has it all…. ancient history, architectural wonders, a romantic language, locals who warmly welcome you, indulgent wine and cuisine… and -- of course -- handsome Italian men!

WHAT MEMORIES DO YOU HOPE TO CREATE FOR YOUR TRAVELERS?

My favorite quote sums this up: “Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the number of moments that take our breath away.” I hope to create these memorable moments for my travelers. I want them to build up a lifetime of fond feelings from this trip. I try to come home with a memory for each of my senses whenever I travel. For Italy, my moments have been: the sound of church bells in the square of San Gigminano; the smell of fresh truffles in the woods; the taste of a full-bodied Montepulciano wine; the sight of Michelangelo’ s Sistine Chapel in Rome; the touch of a handcrafted piece of Italian gold jewelry!

WHAT DO TODAY’S FEMALE TRAVELERS WANT OUT OF TRAVEL?

Extraordinary experiences, a sense of security, and a group who they can feel comfortable with. In other words: they want a small group travel experience where they feel valued… desiring an inclusive, heartfelt environment where women can be themselves without any hesitation or judgment.

WHAT ARE THE ADVANTAGES OF TRAVELING IN A SMALL GROUP?

Intimacy. By this, I mean the possibility of fellow travelers becoming friends for trip or for a lifetime. Knowing that you are traveling with a small group, you never feel like a booking number. You feel cared for, connected. In addition, many exclusive travel experiences are available only to smaller groups. Do you think our opera singer would open up her home to a 40-person bus? Or would the granddaughter of a famous Italian designer teach a cooking class to the masses? I think not! Intimacy and access are the magic of small group travel.

Mary Jo has graciously opened up spots in this trip to your travelers!

Do you have a lady or two who love to travel in the company of new friends? Why not share our October Women’s Group with them? Any seats you sell are 100% commissionable to you.

We’ll share more tidbits about this exclusive adventure over the next few months. Keep your eyes out on Facebook for extra tempting details. Or, call us at (858) 201-6424 to hear more. You can also click here to download the Women’s Group daily itinerary.

Ciao, ciao!

image
image
Share this blog post with your friends: Email Facebook Twitter Pinterest
request a quote

Testimonials!

Recent Posts