After attending the ITB Travel Fair 2019, I learned the travel field continues to grow. More want to get away, however, questions are being asked of the effects. “Overtourism” is becoming common. As a result, Many cities have become overwhelmed by holiday makers. Town centers have been abandoned for tourist. Barcelona, Venice, and Prague are being hollowed out. Coping with the traveler influx has become political and economic topics.
Apartments used for AirBnB, big hotel chains grabbing any available space. Public spaces flooded with visitors armed with selfie sticks. Locals started rebelling against tourists, weary of the temporary guests. The answers are not easy. Recently, a picturesque Parisian neighbourhood petitioned to place gates on the street to stop the weekend Influencer invasion searching for the the perfect gram.
Can flying economy become human again? Perhaps flying in the back of the plane will improve. Airlines are upgrading their services with new seats offering more leg space. Can the budgets say, “AMEN!” Middle East carrier Qatar Airways ups the game. I checked out their new Airbus livery. I give it top marks. A wide choice of in flight entertainment, bigger food portions, and even Godiva Chocolate for dessert. A good product for those looking for a better travel experience without breaking the wallet.
Africa is rising. The continent offers destinations based on experience: a trek to Victoria Falls or a Safari in Namibia. Many countries are developing tourism infrastructure, upgrading airlines while building hotels. Zimbabwe and Sierra Leone, two places not known as tourist friendly locations, are open for business. Asking adventure seekers to give their countries a try.
Colombia continues to move forward on all tourism fronts. A place once known for drug cartels and civil wars has made great strides to become a travel destination. Blessed with an extensive beach coast, mountains, and an multicultural mix of people, the South American country is rolling out the carpet for every type of visitor. Brimming with a smile, the marketing head told me how his country wants to become a top LGBT holiday spot. Many cities have pride and other gay friendly festivals. The capital city Bogota, has a large gay population with many bars and clubs. Moreover, Cartagena and Medellin have vibrant scenes worth exploring. I placed Colombia on my travel list. Stay Tuned.