Wellness for all is the buzzword that is spinning around the global wellness tourism industry. Thanks to the encouraging reports regarding the future wellness trends that surfaced in the Global Wellness Summit (GSW).
The fast growing awareness in wellness is driving millions of tourists look for various life enhancing activities in a unique combo vacation package either in home soil or foreign lands. Global Wellness industry with a current valuation of $3.72 trillion is one of the fastest growing niche markets resilient to recession. [www.globalwellnessinstitue.org]
Leisure travel and tourism, once a fascination of the well heeled has spread to the burgeoning middle class past few decades that has resulted in the proliferation of niche tourism markets like wellness tourism.
Today, a greater percentage of wellness related travel is associated with the affluent class across the globe as evidenced by the robust growth of class specific high-end wellness properties and resorts.
Rising middle class contributing to wellness industry:
While the world is talking about the democratization of wellness, confinement of this high-potential niche market to a specific segment does not augur well for its future growth. It is imperative to broaden the outlook bringing the neither-rich-nor-poor class under the wellness wing.
The global demographic profile has gone under a major alteration with the middle class population rising from 1.8 billion in 2009 to 3.2 billion in 2020. Further extrapolated, it is not surprising to see the middle class population reaching 4.9 billion by 2030. [www.horwathhtl.com].
In the overall mix, the concentration of the bourgeoisie will enhance. Ignoring this class as the prospective wellness clients will be a great mistake missing out on a huge chunk of revenue earning opportunity from this class.
Prime contributors of the global middle class population
About two-thirds of global middle class population will come from Asia Pacific region by 2030. This will lead to 59 % of all middle class consumption where wellness travel will occupy a substantial portion. The spurt in the number bourgeoisie class population will have its roots planted in GDP expansion in both China and India.
In 2020, the Chinese GDP will mount by near about 1.5 times compared to the numbers in 2014. On a similar period base, Indian GDP growth will hike by 1.8 times. When we take a look at the demographic profile of Europe and the US on the other hand, the middle class population level will remain fairly static during the period.
Rising earning capacity of middle class to drive the future wellness industry:
The rising earning level among the Asian middle class will precipitate into decisions on better schooling for children to get a better grasp of the internationally spoken languages. Improved command over these languages will result in a trend among the travelling Asian middle class highly eliminating the language barrier problem.
With a new tool in hand, there will be lesser dependence on travel agents and language interpreters. The middle class Asian travelers seeking wellness will prefer organizing the trip on their own. With new proficiency in language, the educated middle class will depend more on internet search for facts and figures. This will have the following consequences:
– Competition between online travel agents will increase.
– The importance of digital presence will mount.
– Tourists’ digital experience will be a guiding factor for every travel initiatives they take.
With hard earned money to spend and armed with education, the middle class will always look for better options to get the best value for money.
Need for budget wellness properties with proper understanding of the middle class psyche
For the tourism industry to do well with a huge population of middle class clientele in hand, there is a serious need to think of innovative strategies to deliver goods in the best possible way. These new consumers would be very conscious about the product profile and the cost associated with it. They will not hesitate to shift to other providers the moment they feel they are not getting enough value for money.
Wellness tourism is just not confined to the places where people visit. It is the value addition and lifestyle enhancement that matters most. The educated middle class forms the cream of the organizations and bears the brunt of stress of their profession. They badly look for refreshing breaks from time to time, which is driving them more towards wellness tourism.
This section is in continuous lookout for budget travel options weighing the pros and cons ensuring that the expenses would not come down heavily on their pockets. Thus, the huge demand for budget wellness property market gets created.
Align as per the market demand – Stress on domestic wellness tourism
Even though the market demand is high, the competition is higher still. Flying overseas seeking wellness vacation may not be everybody’s choice. Therefore, there is enough scope to grow indigenous budget wellness centers tapping the local culture, tradition and other natural resources and talent that would see year round tourist visit.
Budget wellness centers need to grow their business by volume where the quality wellness services can be provided within an affordable range considering the huge turnout of the middle class tourists.