Extreme heat: this is how it will impact tourist destinations
The effects of climate change they have accelerated this 2022. Heat records have been broken in most of the main European summer destinations, including Spain, and experts predict that many places with a pull among tourists will soon be an oven every summer. An increase in temperatures that will affect the tourism industry, and especially the segment of the Sun and beachfor which these months are key, according to experts, who predict that it will cause a change in trends in travellers.
“If anyone thinks rising heat is good news for traditional beach destinations, they should think again. During this summer’s heat wave in Europe we have seen a clear drop in visitor satisfaction levels during the hottest weeks”warns Carlos Ash, director of sales and marketing for travel intelligence provider Mabrianwhich explains that Climate is one of the most important contextual factors for the tourism sector.
In this regard, remember that hundreds of holiday destinations in the Mediterranean (such as Spain) and North Africa have traditionally based its tourist development in favorable weather conditions.
“Now this is changing, and faster than we think. This is likely to change global travel trends in the coming years, so we’d better look at its effects on traveler expectations and preferences,” recommends
The Mabrian Climate Perception Index.
From a management point of view of hotelier revenuethat increase in mercury is a potentially huge change, as leisure travel prices have been defined by the same high-season summer approach since the beginning of mass tourism in the 1960shighlights Álex Barros, director of marketing and innovation at beonpricewhich indicates that more research will be needed on the impact of temperatures on consumer demand.
“What is the ideal temperature for maximum pricing? Is it affected by temporary volatility in temperatures or just long-term averages?” he asks.
In this line, it also notes that the rise in temperatures will influence the way in which hoteliers approach the construction and opening of new establishments, “not only with regard to location, but also to buildings and common areas with temperature controlled”
For his part, Fabián González, co-founder of Forward_MAD, an event on luxury tourism that will take place in Madrid from October 5 to 7, emphasizes that although luxury hotels and resorts, and luxury experiences in general, are better positioned to adapt to the challenges of climate change, since they have the necessary resources to invest in what is needed, “mass tourism providers, with low margins, have to pay these costs, that make up the difference between profit and loss.
Photo: Peter Burdon. Unplash.
Change in services
In terms of services, hotels and resorts in the hottest places they will have to rethink their outdoor lounging areas, perhaps ending outdoor pools or, at the very least, putting some kind of cover on top, and making them cozier at night, too, including lifesaving services, says Bruno Martins, product manager at global hotel technology provider Shiji Group.
“Spa centers should also be rethought, positioning them more as a place to go to cool off, with fewer saunas and more ice baths,” considers Martins, who warns that golf courses will be equally affected.
“You can’t cover an entire golf course with screens and you’ll need more irrigation at a time when water is scarcer. higher demand,” he predicts.
In this regard, it underlines that technology is going to be the common thread of all these changesWhether it’s through apps that allow guests to better schedule those precious moments of freshness, pricing software that maximizes revenue based on temperature, or electronic wristbands that allow guests access (or not) to certain places at certain times depending on demand.
In the short term, extreme heat is driving eco-consciousness among tourists, says Janis Dzenis, public relations director for flight price comparison website WayAway, detailing that travelers will want to know what destinations and hotels are doing. to fight the climate emergency, and those without a convincing answer will gradually lose ground.
“This will also drive greater demand from travelers who offset their carbon footprint,” he advances.
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