Fast Future Insights Briefing           Premier Inn: Holiday of the Future – A Vision of 2050What might the experience of ...
Who will be Holidaying in the UK in 2050?A combination of changing global patterns of income and wealth coupled with advan...
media profiles to target and tailor offers to the individual. Similarly, your current location,budget, previous purchases ...
particular experiences – a 1960’s Beatles era hotel in Liverpool may sit alongside anotheroffering an authentic Victorian ...
Tomorrow’s hotel will also use a range of alternative energy sources and could even poweritself through piezoelectricity, ...
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Fast Future Foresight Brief for Premier Inn - Holiday of the Future - August 2012


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A short foresight paper exploring how the holiday of the future could evolve by the year 2050. explores demographic, economic, environmentalscientific and technological drivers of change and their implications for travel and tourism - with a focus on the UK.

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Fast Future Foresight Brief for Premier Inn - Holiday of the Future - August 2012

  1. 1. Fast Future Insights Briefing Premier Inn: Holiday of the Future – A Vision of 2050What might the experience of holidaying in the UK in 2050 be like? Where will we stay, howwill we get there and how might advances in science and technology transform our leisureexperience? In this thought piece, global travel industry futurist Rohit Talwar acts as our tourguide to UK vacations in the year 2050.Context – Will we Still be Holidaying in 2050?In the year 2050, money will almost certainly be a crucial factor - with the biggest influences heon the types of holidays we take still being the economy, personal incomes and wealth.Another key factor will be social trends and expectations – which in turn will be shaped bythe evolution of science and technology, the environment, climate change and socio socio-demographic influences such as the size and age distribution of the population. Whilstdevelopments in each of these areas will introduce major shocks to the system, our startingpoint is that the notion of holidays as a form leisure activity will still exist in 2050. However activitythe nature of those experiences will differ markedly from today.The long term prospects remain bright - by 2050 travel and tourism may contribute upwardsof £120 billion to the UK economy - reaching £53.1bn by 2022, up from £35bn in 20111. It isalso forecast to contribute up to 500,000 additional jobs. However, perhaps the biggestsingle challenge to this optimistic outlook is climate change. A 2012 UK Government reportnotes that if preventative action isn’t taken, we can expect a tenfold increase in thedevastating impacts of flooding, while there may be as many as 120 days a year where thetemperature rises above 26C by the 2080s2. This could result in a lot more people choosingto stay in the UK and use greener transport options such as rail. Equally, legislation maymean we end up with personal carbon emissions allowances which effectively rule out manyforms of travel – particularly to international destinations. rlyHow will work-life balance alter and what could this mean for the duration of our holidays? lifeAutomation will drive the transformation of many industries, creating leaner businesses witha lot more part-time contract workers – possibly serving a portfolio of employers. The growth timeof home working will almost certainly continue for efficiency and environmental reasons and environmentalthe office place we know today could be a rarity. These changes will give us far more controlover our own time and allow for flexibility in the types of holiday we take. Many people willopt for frequent two to five day short breaks throughout the year rather than one or twolarger ones.It will also be more common for people to take breaks of one to three months – possiblycentred on one or more experience For example we could take a tour of the great industrial experiences.era towns or visit major historic arts and craft centres and try out experiences from cottonweaving in Manchester to landscape painting in Lands End. The traditional one to two weekbreak may be split across multiple centres – e.g. a week at the artificial beach on theThames followed by a week in a zero gravity ‘space camp’ in the heart of Leicester.
  2. 2. Who will be Holidaying in the UK in 2050?A combination of changing global patterns of income and wealth coupled with advances intransport technology, mean that, by 2050, holidays in the UK will be in reach for a significantproportion of the global population. Our expectation is that a growing number of futurevisitors will come from the emerging economies – many of which will continue on theircurrent path of economic growth and social development – albeit with a few hiccoughs onthe way.In terms of traveller volumes, the largest number of inbound holidaymakers is expected tocome from countries like China and India. Both already have populations of over 1 billionand by 2050 their average income levels are projected to rise in real terms to create acombined travelling class of 1 billion or more with spending power roughly equivalent tocitizens of the UK. Developments in transport technology will have a major impact – forexample hypersonic flight will enable the wealthy of Beijing and Mumbai to reach the UK inaround 2-3 hours. Such advances will also put the major the major cities of the world fromSydney to Singapore or San Francisco in reach of UK citizens for a weekend break.The domestic market is also expected to grow. Estimates suggest that around 72 millioncitizens could be calling the UK home by 2050, up from 62 million in 20103. The big changehere is the age distribution of the population, with the number of people over 65 expected toincrease from 10 million to 19 million over the period4.We are an increasingly mobile society, and despite current difficulties, we are anticipated tobecome a more affluent one. The mix within society is also expected to continue changingwith an increasing number of single-person households – rising from 6.8 million in 2006 toan estimated 10.9 million by 2031 - suggesting that 18% of the UK population could be livingalone in under 20 years5. This will drive growth of a range of holidays and leisure activitiesfocused on the individual.The rise of single households should also spur growth in holidays catering to extendedfamilies spanning multiple households. Research suggests that 44% of adults who takemulti-generation holidays today are doing so more often than they did five years ago. At thesame time, nearly a third (28%) of grandparents holiday with members of their wider familymuch more often than previously6. A total of 52% of UK adults say they have been away, orare planning to go away, with two or more different generations of their family in 2012. By2050, with people living longer, family holidays could be catering for multi-generationalparties aged from one to one hundred.In addition to being older and spending more on tourism, we will almost certainly be morewired. There are already an estimated 9 billion devices connected to the internet7 and this ispredicted to rise to 50 billion devices connected globally by 2020 - over 6 devices perperson. Our technology will travel with us everywhere and form a central part of ourexperience from hotel booking to providing our entertainment and controlling the roomenvironment to meet our precise requirements.The Travel Booking ProcessTechnology is enabling deep personalisation of our travel buying experience. For example,hotels will increasingly use ‘predictive analytics’ to look at our travel histories and our socialPremier Inn: Holiday of the Future – Draft V2.0 07/08/12 Page 2 of 6
  3. 3. media profiles to target and tailor offers to the individual. Similarly, your current location,budget, previous purchases and status on a given social network could help you decide notonly where you go, but who you go with. The Dutch Airline, KLM, has already introducedsocial seating where you pick who to sit next to on a flight based on the social media profilesyou’ve shared with other passengers. The step from social seating to social holidays is anatural evolution.By 2050, a fully immersive, multi-sensory 3D successor to the internet will enable us to tryevery aspect of a hotel stay before we travel – from sampling the food on restaurant menusto experiencing the feel of the bed linen.What Types of Holiday will we Take?Our identities are becoming increasingly fluid and hard to segment, hence there is likely tobe a growth in niche holidays to cater for our diverse whims. Whether we want a hikingbreak, a weekend swapping notes with fellow historians interested in Norfolk footwear from1800-1820 or to spend a week acting as a product tester for the next generation ofconsumer goods – our needs will be catered for. Social media is enabling global interestgroups to form and define and reverse auction their desired holiday experience – with hotelsbidding to provide the best fit solution. An increasingly mobile connected society is alsoallowing for a greater degree of spontaneity and freedom in how and when we make ourtravel choices8.Augmented and virtual reality will change our experience of the world – enabling us tooverlay digitally generated enhancements on our real world holiday experiences. Throughtechnology, history, like many other facets of life, could be turned into a relivable experience.So, rather than simply walking through a castle, technology will transform our visit so we canexperience the sights, sounds and smells of court life as it would have been. Robot staffdressed in period costume will help recreate historic experiences down to the smallest detail.By 2050 human enhancement will be commonplace. Perhaps the most widely chosen formof augmentation will be embedded chips that enable us to communicate wirelessly with theintelligent devices that permeate our world. Others may well seek replacement body parts toincrease their physical performance or enable them to stand out from the crowd. As a result,superman-like hearing, 10-fingered hands and eyes in the backs of our heads may no longerbe the realm of science fiction. Hence, augmentation holidays will be a natural evolution ofmedical tourism with people combining a hotel stay with an enhancement procedure.Should climate change become a genuine impediment to global travel, we could see anincreasing emphasis on bringing the world to us. Entire holiday destinations such as Venice,the Great Wall of China and the Galapagos could be recreated in Ventnor, Coventry and –Gateshead respectively – made accessible via clean forms of transport. At the opposite endof the spectrum to the vision of tomorrow’s holiday as a technology-centric experience will bea strengthening of the slow travel movement. Here the emphasis will be on simplicity, fun,authenticity and active experiences9.Where Will we Stay?The choice of UK and overseas holiday destinations will be even more diverse than today. Ina highly automated and digitally enhanced world, the craving for real, natural and ‘traditional’experiences will be immense. Hence, we will be able to stay in properties themed aroundPremier Inn: Holiday of the Future – Draft V2.0 07/08/12 Page 3 of 6
  4. 4. particular experiences – a 1960’s Beatles era hotel in Liverpool may sit alongside anotheroffering an authentic Victorian vacation. Visiting the birthplaces of our parents andgrandparents will become a common travel experience. Hotels will offer ancestry guides toresearch our family history and lead us on a journey to the birthplaces of our forefathers.Destinations will be challenged over the next few decades to decide what they want to be.Major cities such as London and Manchester will strive to offer every kind of humanexperience from the past, the present and the future. Others may choose to themethemselves around particular concepts or activities. For example Milton Keynes may chooseto reinvent itself as a living memorial to Britain’s triumphs in the 2028 Olympics when ittopped the medals table. Hotels may be themed around particular sports and holidaymakerswill be able to experience the thrill of running, swimming or rowing to gold medal victory –racing against robotic replicas of the competitors from 2028.Locations such as the Lake District and New Forest will strive to retain their focus on naturalattractions and pursuits. We will also see a rise in artificial hotel and leisure destinations builton reclaimed land on the sea coast from Brighton to Bridlington or floating islands on majorlakes and rivers such as the Thames. The search for the unspoilt and undiscovered will leadus to cast our net ever more widely. The tourist trail will take us from small agricultural townsin Sardinia to industrial ports in Poland and Latvia that have been reinvented as touristdestinations.Environmental considerations will play a part in our choices of overseas destinations.Locations across Europe from Copenhagen to Kazakhstan that can be reached via cross-channel train and the continental rail network will prove popular. Trans-continental traintravel will become ever more popular as rail networks around the world improve. Increasingnumbers of intrepid travellers will venture from the UK to the furthest corners or Europe,Africa, Asia and the Middle East – making the entire journey by rail.Hotels in 2050The nature of hotels in 2050 will see as much diversity as the experiences that go on withinthem. With the advent of more flexible architecture, the limits on location have been almosteradicated. The side of a mountain, under the ocean and even space have all either seen orwill soon host hotels. The question of where next is also complicated by complex socialinteractions. To what extent will humans continue to value novelty? What happens whenyou can rent your own personal pod hotel and have it delivered anywhere? Will ourincreasingly digital lifestyles result in a desire to re-connect with nature, staying in an outdoorcabin designed to our specification and reared specifically for us using fast growing trees10?Another option will be to travel the UK in giant airship hotels - allowing us to go nowhereslowly.The notion of personalisation will demand a degree of flexibility previously thoughtimpossible. In particular, we will see a growth in eco-designed buildings. For example,‘biomimetic’ architecture that fuses high-tech ideas with basic cellular functions to create‘living’ structures that operate like natural organisms. In these structures the exterior ofbuildings, such as hotels, functions as a living skin11. The skin responds to allow light, airand water into the hotel and change its aspect to cut down the need for electricity.Premier Inn: Holiday of the Future – Draft V2.0 07/08/12 Page 4 of 6
  5. 5. Tomorrow’s hotel will also use a range of alternative energy sources and could even poweritself through piezoelectricity, which converts footsteps into energy.The speed of hotel construction is one area where we anticipate massive change. Forexample, in China in January 2012, Broad Group constructed a 30 storey hotel in 15 daysusing largely pre-fabricated components and an accelerated construction approach12. Suchtechniques will enable hoteliers to erect properties rapidly in response to market demandand then dismantle and relocate them to more popular destinations as demand patternschange.Within the hotel, the ability to change the look and feel of the room and to personalise it toyour whims will flow from the increasingly wired environments we inhabit. For example digitalwallpaper will be commonplace – enabling us to view real time footage from the beach in Riowhile staying at a hotel in Rotherham. Flexible, digitally controlled interior architecture withmovable walls could allow rapid room reconfiguration and personalisation to individual guestpreferences. Robotic butlers and service staff will be commonplace.In conclusion, UK holidays in 2050 will be a complex fusion of the remarkably familiar withthe radically different. The constants in this vision of the future are the notion of travelling forrelaxation or an experience and the destinations we may visit. What will be very different willbe the nature of the experiences we consume, the properties we stay in and thetechnologies than govern our end to end experience. Choice and personalisation will still becentral drivers and the desire for novelty and stories to take home will still be a dominantfeature of our holiday choices.Rohit Talwar is the founder and CEO of Fast Future Research. Rohit is a global futurist andwith his team, undertakes a range of studies exploring the future of travel, tourism hotels,aviation and leisure. He is a regular keynote speaker at travel industry conferences – andhas addressed leadership audiences in over 60 countries around the world.rohit@fastfuture.comTel +44 (0)7973 405 145www.fastfuture.comPremier Inn: Holiday of the Future – Draft V2.0 07/08/12 Page 5 of 6
  6. 6. Sources1 Inn: Holiday of the Future – Draft V2.0 07/08/12 Page 6 of 6