Providing a travel experience and services that appeal to a specific group of consumers can be an extremely valuable asset for any person who can effectively market to that group. Special interest travel is conceived around a specific topic or theme, such as a hobby, activity or cultural subject.
There are many areas of specialization to consider, but here are a few that have had recent attention and success:
Spas & Wellness: There are many different types of spas and wellness get-a-ways popping up around the world. With today’s fast paced, high-stress lifestyles, many people are seeking solitude and relaxation at yoga centers, holistic spas, and mediation and spiritual retreats in locations such India and Indonesia.
Accessible Travel: Travelers with disabilities require skilled travel services that provide the knowledge of the traveler’s special needs and what to look for in assessing various modes of transportation, lodging, destinations and attractions.
Connoisseur Travel: Vacations that provide extravagance, indulgence, lavishness, and up-scale-everything is the idea behind connoisseur travel. These are clients who demand the best of the best and seek such decadent adventures as private yacht excursions in the Mediterranean, cooking classes with private chefs, wine tasting tours at prestigious cellars in Italy, or luxury camping and camel trekking in Arabia. These particular clients want the absolute best and are willing to pay for it.
Green Travel: Eco-travel and eco-tourism is the latest in “green” business ventures evolving around the world. Destination marketing companies and tour operators continue to promote hotels and attractions around the world that seek to improve, protect, and enhance the social and environmental impacts of travel. This includes bike tours, hiking vacations, lodges powered by solar or wind power. “Eco-tourism affords travelers the opportunity to directly benefit the people and places they visit by supporting conservation and protecting cultural heritage as well as economic development,” says Brian T. Mullis, president of the Sustainable Tourism Institute (www.sustainabletravelinternational.org). “Taking an eco-friendly vacation provides responsible travelers with an opportunity to do their part.” Golf: This multi-billion dollar market assists travelers with their arrangements to the top golf destinations in the U.S. and around the world. This type of service not only books the flights and hotels, but also tee times and pro lessons, provides course layouts and puts together packages specific to the client’s personal handicap. Honeymoon & Destination Weddings: As a provider of this type of service, you would be required to make very special arrangements such as photographers, religious facilities, restaurants, as well as be aware of the legal requirements in the destination of choice. Great places to market this would service would include bridal shows, on the Web, and through unique honeymoon registries. Mature Adult: No matter what you call them—mature, seniors, baby boomers, golden oldies, empty nesters—they love to travel. The profit potential this market offers is huge, and every agent is vying for their business. Having a thorough knowledge of the needs and characteristics of mature travelers will provide you with a strong advantage over your competitors. Mature adults have the money and the time to travel, making this profitable, growing market a must to consider. The possibilities for Specialty Travel Services are unlimited, and each one comes complete with passionate prospects ready for the right adventure. By capitalizing on these select markets you will set yourself apart from your competitors and can create a very lucrative business.