Wellness tourism just gained a nod from one of the most influential publications read by entrepreneurs and business owners – Fast Company.
Citing how wellness travel has grown to about $563 billion in global spend, the publication noted Global Wellness Institute research (also reported here in TMR) that shows that while overall tourism is growing at 6.9%, the wellness tourism sector grew 14% in the past two years, and that more than 690 million wellness-focused trips were taken in 2015.
The article quotes Global Wellness Institute research director Beth McGroarty saying this growth “seems unstoppable.”
The publication also cited the past few years of research from MMGY, including the growth in travel agent usage, and mentioned two wellness-focused agents, Melissa Bruno, founder of Invigorate Travel, and Linden Schaffer, founder of the wellness travel company Pravassa.
Americans’ obsession with their work and careers is fueling this growth, said Fast Company. “Americans are vacation-deprived, sleep-deprived, more prone to chronic diseases, generally overworked, and over connected to their devices. With so much daily stress and unanswered emails accumulating in our inboxes, our time off becomes even more important,” wrote author Rina Raphael.
In the article, Fast Company defined wellness travel “as vacationing while enhancing or maintaining one's well-being—physical, mental, or spiritual,” and pointed to several current trends, including “fitness classes, yoga, surfing, and guided mediation.”
"People not only need that time off, but they need it to be effective when it comes to relaxation and stress reduction,” Schaffer said.
Popular destinations include Nicaragua, Thailand, Vietnam, Bali and Morocco.