Anna Guchok, a holistic speaker in the field of medical and wellness tourism gave a compelling speech and shared some valuable insights pertaining to the field. Let’s go through some key points covered in that speech.
Seldom will you come across people who are at peace with the life they are leading. The majority of us live a very hectic and stressful life. Our lifestyles push us towards mental burn out and cause various health problems. To get away from our lifestyle, we look for an escape that can rejuvenate us, help us fight our mental stress and restore our health. Wellness tourism is seeing tremendous growth over the years, as people are seeking to slip away from their routine and immerse themselves into something that can help them find their sense of calm.
In 2017, wellness tourism was a six hundred and thirty-nine billion-dollar industry.
People are more and more understanding of the need for mental wellbeing and spending on maintaining their mental, emotional and physical health.
There is an estimation that by 2020, the wellness tourism industry will be a one trillion dollar industry.
World travelers made 830 million wellness trips in 2017, representing 17% of all tourism revenues.
Before understanding the different aspects of wellness tourism, let us first understand what wellness tourism is.
Wellness tourism is traveling with the purpose of promoting health and well-being through activities that are physical, psychological or spiritual in nature. It is traveling to understand and learn lifestyle practices that can make one’s life better.
People are going around the globe looking for peace and purpose. On average, an international tourist spends 15000 dollars per trip for wellness-related travel that is 53% more than a typical international tourist, on the other hand, a domestic tourist spends 609 dollars per trip for wellness-related travel that is according to the numbers 178% more than an average domestic tourist.
Four key factors that are promoting the growth of wellness tourism can be classified as follows:
- There is an awareness in society on the importance of mental health on your body and life. People are realizing that in order to live a happy and satisfying life, it is not only important to be physically fit, your mental wellbeing also plays a very important role. They are actively seeking to find ways where they can break free and be one with nature.
- There is a tremendous increase in issues related to mental health, mental illness and other factors that stress the mind are on the rise. According to the WHO (World Health Organisation), one in every four people is suffering from some kind of mental disorder. It estimates that there are 450 million people around the world that are suffering from a diagnosable mental health issue.
- The World Health Organization incorporated mental wellbeing and mental wellness as a part of its world health policy and are actively promoting it.
- Increase in demand for alternative treatments to treat various kinds of ailments. People are seeking new ways to improve their health and fight diseases.
The rising mental and emotional distress and the desire to look for an escape that can bring peace and wellbeing has made more and more people to travel with a purpose of wellness.
But what are people looking for when they plan a wellness getaway?
What are the different purposes people have in mind when they plan a wellness holiday?
And what are the different kinds of retreats available when it comes to wellness tourism?
Well, different people are looking for improving different aspects of their life. Some want to immerse themselves in silent meditation to try to find a purpose in their lives, while others want to drown in nature and have a detox from their digital and social life, while some only want to experience and adapt to a healthier way of living.
Some of the interesting trends in wellness tourism are:
1) Nature Immersion Getaways:
One of the leading trends in the wellness industry are getaways that give you a chance to immerse yourself in nature. These retreats are generally built in locations that are away from the hustle-bustle of the city. It allows you to live in the lap of nature. Generally for people who are looking for a break from their fast-paced life.
2) Preventative Wellness:
These wellness retreats help us with learning lifestyle choices that can save us from various cardiovascular diseases, chronic respiratory disease, diabetes, or cancer. They are called preventative wellness programs, to give an example of preventative wellness programs anti-tobacco holidays. People are also seeking retreats that help them with slowing down their aging process and increases their longevity.
3) Active Lifestyle Retreats
Transformative wellness retreats are retreats that teach you new kinds of activities. These practices can be incorporated in the day to day lifestyle. These retreats teach you activities and different methods of exercising that makes you healthy. They also include introducing new activities, like trekking and hiking. According to a report released by the wellness institute research department, sports + mindfulness can comprise of a most mindful retreat.
4) Emotional Healing Holidays
These retreats are designed to recharge your emotional batteries. They keep your emotional health in focus and help you with maintaining your emotional health. They offer lectures on stress management, coaching on emotional healing, and life healing.
5) Wellness Nutrition Retreats
These retreats offer knowledge on ways of eating healthy food. They teach you to cook in styles that keep the nutrition level of the food intact. They also teach you the nutrition levels of different food. Basically, it promotes you to eat a healthy diet, a diet that suits your mind and body and keeps them healthy.
6) Alternative Treatment Retreats
These retreats offer an alternate form of medication for the treatment of a disease. To consider as an example we can say Ayurveda retreats offer Ayurvedic solutions to problems like diabetes and certain types of cancer and cardiovascular diseases. People are aware of the negative effects of western medication and are looking for ways to heal their bodies without harming it further.
7) Menopause Retreats
Menopause is a very difficult time for women, they experience various unpleasant health conditions, to consider a few like hot flashes, mood swings and various hormonal changes that the body goes through. These retreats help women with different types of practices, diet, and medication that can ease the process for them.
8) Middle-Age Men Retreats
These are specific to males wellness programs that deal with different issues faced by middle-aged men.
9) Fertility Retreats:
These retreats design various activities and treatments that are necessary for fertility. They inform you about healthy diet practices and lifestyle practices that are helpful in improving fertility.
The wellness economy consists of these five markets:
1) Wellness Lifestyle Real Estate
According to the numbers, 1.5% of the global construction market comes from wellness lifestyle real estate. People are buying properties that provide them with a space where they can take part in healthy lifestyle practices.
2) Workplace Wellness
The annual market accounts for 50 billion dollars. More and more employers are understanding the need for mental health. They are encouraging employees to focus on their physical and mental health.
3) SPA Industry
It is a 100 billion dollar market employing more than 2.6 million workers. SPA day is a great way to relieve stress and rejuvenate yourself. It is a relaxing experience and has various health benefits.
4) Thermal and Mineral Springs
They employ more than 2 million workers globally. These springs have various health benefits, from treating various skin conditions to improving blood circulation. It also helps in reducing stress and induces sleep.
5) Wellness Tourism
As we have seen above, wellness tourism is a booming industry. According to an estimation, it is growing at a double rate to general tourism.
People are seeking mental peace and wellbeing, wellness tourists are ready to travel as long as it is required to find their mindfulness and wellbeing.