Top 2023 Travel Predictions

Where are you going next year? Here are AAA's 2023 travel predictions.
2023 travel predictions

Where are people traveling in 2023? Travel has been changing a lot in recent years, and 2023 will be no exception. To get some insight into the outlook for travel next year, we spoke to Allison Villasenor, AAA Northeast’s managing director of travel products and innovation, and Chuck Nardozza, managing director of travel sales. From the growth of European travel to the return to cruising, they shared their top 2023 travel predictions.

The appetite for international travel has returned. American travelers with the necessary means intend to take an average of 3.8 international vacations within the next 12 months, up 72% from 2019, according to a study by MMGY Travel Intelligence.

There will likely be a preference for visiting less-crowded destinations in 2023. This is partly due to COVID-19 concerns, but perhaps also due to a growing desire to have a unique experience. Travelers are opting for small group adventure travel, like AAA Club Adventures. While standard international travel destinations like Italy, Ireland and the Caribbean remain popular, travelers are also looking to visit more unique locations. Escorted tours, customized trips and experiential travel are on the rise.

Millennials are planning to go on more international trips than baby boomers within the next 12 months. But both millennials and boomers should be turning to a trusted travel advisor to help make their dream vacations happen.

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European Travel

If you’re thinking of finally going on that European vacation you’ve always been dreaming about, so are a lot of other travelers. The U.S. dollar is more powerful in Europe than it has been in the last 20 years, and it looks like it’s going to stay strong for a while. Plus, most countries in Europe have lifted their pandemic travel bans and restrictions, making it far easier to travel there. Savvy tourists are taking the opportunity to plan their grand European tours for 2023.

Tourists will once again flock to the great cities of Europe, like Paris, London and Barcelona to see the sights. More recent vacation favorites, like Iceland, will also be getting their share of travelers.  

Hitting the High Seas

Cruising really came back in 2022, and cruises are expected to become even more popular in 2023. “We saw new ships being deployed in 2022, and that won’t stop in 2023,” Villasenor and Nardozza said. “It’s not just large ocean cruise liners – we’re seeing new ships of every size!”

Small ship cruises to destinations like the Arctic Circle and the Galapagos are also on the rise, including a resurgence of European river cruises.

Cruising is popular partially because of its all-inclusive nature. Travelers are going to be a lot more conscious about where their money is going in 2023, and it’s easier to budget for an all-inclusive cruise. If you want to set sail in 2023, try cruising out of ports in New York City, Boston and New Jersey. You won’t even have to pay for a flight!

2023 travel predictions

Travel Together

In 2023, travelers are sticking with their friends and family. Instead of vacationing as a couple or even traveling on their own, “More and more members are booking getaways to travel in small groups,” Villasenor and Nardozza said. It seems like in 2023, people would rather see the world together than striking out alone. Travel can also be seen as an educational opportunity. Families with young children will be traveling together and learning about the world together.

Responsible Travel

Another big 2023 travel prediction is that travelers will want to make a positive impact with their trips. It’s beneficial to both the traveler and the destination when tourists choose to put their money back into the communities that they are visiting.

“AAA Travel partners with suppliers that ensure a small travel footprint and use locally owned hotels, local transportation and authentic local experiences,” Villasenor and Nardozza said. Club Adventures is, again, a great option for those who want a focus on sustainable, community-oriented travel. Travelers in 2023 will be mindful of supporting local hotels, restaurants and excursions on their vacations.

Travel Outlook

The travel industry has been through a lot, and there are more changes to come. But people are always going to want to see the world and have meaningful experiences while they do. Here’s to great vacations in 2023!

Connect with a AAA travel advisor and start planning your 2023 trips today.

Tell us where you want to go next year in the comments below.

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5 Thoughts on “Top 2023 Travel Predictions

  1. Already planning my 2023 KymCations: Aruba, Cuba, Thailand are at the Top.. Then, hopefully, Puerto Villarto, for a wind down…

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