Over the Top
The game of year-end lists is no distraction for those travelers who know what they truly want
Best of this,‘Top’of that,‘Travel Trends’for whatever— hotels, where to go, and the year! And—wait for it—trends that will change how we travel in the future. Wow! Who knew that from December 2014 to January 2015 travel would be remade through transcendent acts that will affect our lives henceforth and forevermore, only because the clock ticks over from the last day of the previous year to the first day of the next!
All kidding aside, there are many lists that are insightful. However for me reflecting on the year gone by is something that is a shortlived, albeit important, exercise; to take stock in the past year’s travels, people I met on the road, destinations that opened my eyes and even recounting aha moments. Yet I truly find the future to be more interesting.
When I say future, I’m not talking about far distant dreamy-eyed future concepts of travel; I’m talking about the year immediately in front of me.
There are two categories I take a special interest in, the first being the lists of future trends. I enjoy contemplating what others are seeking from their journeys, from experiential and novelty-seeking travel, top destinations and off the beaten path adventures, to tantalizing culinary journeys. Finally, there are always the shiny new baubles and toys – like wearables and whiz-bang travel gadgets – coming from the world’s largest assemblage of what’s-next-in-tech, the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
The second future glimpse I truly enjoy is combing over readers’ ‘Bucket Lists’from those sharing on Business Traveler’s forum. Originating from the phrase,“kick the bucket,”it is simply the list of those things one wishes to do before dying.
By its very nature, it is a list of things that will inherently encounter detours, involve changes and often may be a“work in progress.” Sometimes it could be to learn a different culture or a new language. It could possibly even take the form of changing someone else’s life by giving back. It is less a quantitative, tick-thebox approach, since it involves judging success by the passion one has for the bucket list item itself.
Specific destinations are always on the top of the list, especially exotic or off the beaten path, or perhaps modes of travel such as train versus air. This kind of different experience is always the first and most popular response.
Interestingly enough, there are always those that make you wonder. Some of those I found most intriguing include learning a new skill; becoming more educated and experiencing the wines and authentic dishes of Chile, Argentina, and South Africa; exploring the cultures of various countries – Laos, Colombia, Mozambique.
Those on the more adventurous side seek to experience a gorilla sanctuary in Uganda, elephant orphanage in Chiang Raj or wildlife in their habitat in Zambia, the Galapagos Islands or India. The Motor City Motown Museum in Detroit even made one traveler’s bucket list.
As you can see, travelers are adventurous souls. They take their business of travel seriously and pair that with exploring themselves, others and the world around them. People like these don’t need a ‘Best’ of this,‘Top’ of that,‘Travel Trends’ for this, that or the other thing list to let them know what’s on their bucket list. BT