A group of sheep is a flock, a group of wolves is a pack, but how do you refer to a group of luxury travel experts? This October, we have the answer: Forward_MAD.
As restrictions related to COVID come to an end, there is an appetite for travel. Agencies, tour operators, hotels, airlines, destinations and other tourist services are seeing a recovery in demand, as travellers would like to make up for lost time during the last two years.
Google tells us that the number of US citizens applying for a passport has grown by 300% and Virtuoso, the network of agencies specializing in luxury and experiential travel, has already published the list of top summer destinations for US tourists in 2022.
Though many US travellers will stay local, there are seven European countries in the top ten list: Italy, France, Greece, the UK, Spain, Ireland and Switzerland. UK and German tourists are likely to follow this path and resume their trips and holidays abroad.
But luxury travel is really the one to watch: this segment of the travel market had a size of $945.6 billion in 2019 and estimates show it will grow at a rate of 11.1% every year until 2027.
It is also a fascinating space to be in as the definition of luxury is different for each person, but high-roller visitors tend to like safety and flexibility while they also look for a tailor-made experience with a local touch.
For all these reasons, we are staging the second edition of Forward_MAD from October 5th to October 7th in Madrid – following the success of last year’s inaugural event.
The Spanish capital will once again be the world capital of luxury tourism – including professionals such as investors, hoteliers, airline execs, and senior tour operator and travel agency professionals – where they will discuss current trends, challenges faced and opportunities available.
Already, Madrid is becoming a high-end tourist destination: 2.53 million of its visitors stayed in four- and five-star hotels in 2021, while 64 percent of the hotels inaugurated since 2019 belong to those two categories. But we believe it has even greater potential still!
Over the coming weeks and months, we’ll be updating you on the speakers, sponsors and planned activities for the event. Stay tuned!