Political unrest is a reality. How are we dealing with it?

Political unrest is a reality. How are we dealing with it?

Not so long ago, we believed that the European Union was inseparable and the election of Donald Trump was impossible.

“Now, nearly 80% of US luxury travellers believe there is a significant probability of serious social unrest at home, and nearly two-thirds are concerned with the impact Trump is having on the US reputation abroad.” *

Fears of political environments are not restricted to the US, however, as demonstrated by the very recent state of emergency imposed by authorities in the Maldives. Impacting the luxury market on the Indian Ocean archipelago, the political upheaval has led to hundreds of holiday cancellations:

"We have a higher market for Chinese and Indian travellers, and we are seeing most of the cancellations from these markets," a tour operator in Malé has told Reuters, on condition of anonymity.

Read the article here 

We therefore asked ILTM movers and shakers how political unrest is affecting the way we buy and sell luxury.

*The State of the Affluent Mindset (2017), YouGov and ILTM

Industry Views

Travel Brand View

"Unrest driven by political and cultural differences is certainly a reality around the world, including many destinations sought out by modern luxury travellers. It’s our responsibility in the travel industry to ensure that we are honest and clear in our communication about how this affects our operations and thereby allow informed travellers to make up their own minds about travelling. We have certainly found that our guests educate themselves by doing more research and asking more questions, but ultimately share our view that choosing to travel keeps the conversation going, keeps people in touch and exposed to the outside world, and keeps valuable income flowing to those communities that rely on it most."

Travel Agency View

"With everything that is happening and going on in the world today, whether that is political situations or unfortunately terrorism, people are more knowledgeable than they have ever been. Today we acknowledge that those issues are a part of the world we live in but that does not mean that they should stop you going out and exploring.

I remember years ago when something of this nature would happen that people would immediately holdback, putting a hold on their travel plans and cancelling trips, but now in luxury we do not see that. Take for instance the events in Europe or any other political situation; we did not see any response. In fact, I think it has a reverse effect. If people see politics getting complicated and tensions risings then they think, “Let’s travel before it gets worse.

In the end, it all comes down to travel. It is all about telling the world that it is not all about politics; politics cannot dictate the way in which we explore the world. The travel community is an international community and therefore we are more open to multicultural experiences. Ultimately, travel is increasing in the face of political uncertainty."


"As uncertainty continues to affect the world, the luxury travel industry continues to defy the reality. We are a robust community and refuse to let fear and anxiety affect the way we move around the world.

Connecting with humanity is now more important than ever. Travel broadens minds and breaks borders, creating global citizens as opposed to shut off or shut in individuals. As Benjamin Disraeli put in, ‘travel teaches tolerance’ – travel can provide an anecdote to this fear of uncertainty."

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