Study: Greece and Mallorca Set To Become 'Too Hot' for Summer Getaways

Study: Greece and Mallorca Set To Become 'Too Hot' for Summer Getaways

Climate change is poised to reshape the global tourism industry over the next two decades, according to a recent study conducted by travel company Intrepid Travel in collaboration with The Foresight Laboratory, a future trend analysis firm. The study foresees profound changes in how people travel and engage in tourism, driven by the urgent need to address climate-related challenges.

One of the alarming findings of the study is that beloved vacation spots like Greece and Mallorca could become uncomfortably hot during the summer months, prompting travellers to seek cooler alternatives like Belgium, Slovenia, and Poland. This shift underscores the growing impact of rising temperatures on traditional vacation destinations.

In addition, regions that traditionally offered winter attractions, such as ice and snow-based activities, may no longer be able to provide these experiences as a result of changing climate patterns.

Perhaps most concerning, low-lying destinations like the Maldives, Jakarta, Amsterdam, and Venice face the threat of submergence within the next three decades due to rising sea levels and extreme weather events.

In response to these challenges, the study suggests a transition toward "regenerative" tourism, where environmental considerations play a central role in travel decisions. This paradigm shift acknowledges the urgent need for sustainable tourism practices.

The summer sun in Mallorca can be relentless

Darren Wade, the Australian co-founder and chairman of Intrepid Travel, emphasised that the catastrophic impacts of climate change are no longer a distant concern but a present reality. He stressed the necessity of evolving tourism into a regenerative model, given that the current approach is unsustainable.

Martin Raymond from The Foresight Laboratory stated that these developments are ushering in a new era for the travel and tourism industry, characterised by innovative experiences that prioritise a zero environmental footprint

The report generated from the study, titled "The Sustainable Future for Travel," also outlines seven trends anticipated to shape the tourism landscape by 2040. These trends include:

  1. Government regulations mandating that travel companies allocate a significant portion of their customers' spending to support local economies.
  2. The development of user-friendly technologies for tracking each traveller's emissions, integrated with Artificial Intelligence.
  3. The issuance of "pollution passports," which would restrict the amount of pollution an individual can generate and the number of trips they can take each year.
  4. A surge in the construction of accommodations with zero environmental footprints, built sustainably by local artisans.
  5. A shift away from air travel in favour of land-based options, particularly luxury and high-speed trains.
  6. The rise of virtual vacations, allowing travellers to experience popular destinations through 360-degree augmented reality videos.
  7. A greater emphasis on human interaction and social experiences over traditional tourism products, fostering meaningful connections with locals and fellow travellers.

The study suggests that the travel and tourism industry is on the brink of a significant transformation as climate change forces travellers and businesses to adopt more sustainable practices. These changes, while challenging, offer an opportunity to create a more environmentally conscious and socially connected form of tourism for future generations.

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