In a recent report released by American Express Travel, the top 10 trending travel destinations for 2024 were unveiled, showcasing travelers’ ever-evolving preferences and the rise of unconventional locations. This list, generated from global card member travel bookings and recommendations from a team of travel consultants, provides an intriguing glimpse into the future of travel.
Gen-Z and Millennials Shape Travel Trends
The report highlights that these trending locations are particularly captivating for Gen-Z and Millennial travelers, as they seek unique experiences and strive to immerse themselves in local cultures. This desire to break away from conventional tourist hotspots has led to an increasing interest in off-the-beaten-path destinations that offer authentic and immersive experiences.
Santa Fe, New Mexico: The Sole U.S. Representative
Among the top 10 trending destinations, only one U.S. city has made the list: Santa Fe, New Mexico. Known as the oldest capital city in America, Santa Fe boasts a rich heritage of Spanish, Mexican, and Native American art and traditions. Its unique blend of cultures has earned it the distinction of being the first city in the United States to be designated as a UNESCO Creative City in 2005.
With over 250 galleries and around 10% of jobs tied to arts and cultural industries, Santa Fe has firmly established itself as an artistic hub. Living up to its title, the city was named America’s most creative small city by the Western States Arts Federation in 2020.
Niseko, Japan: A Paradisiacal Winter Wonderland
Another noteworthy destination on the list is Niseko, Japan. Renowned for its exceptional skiing and world-class snow conditions, Niseko is a paradise for winter sports enthusiasts. With an average of over 35 feet of fresh snow per season, it has become a magnet for those seeking thrilling slopes and breathtaking landscapes.
Situated on Hokkaido, Japan’s northernmost island, Niseko is also famous for its natural hot springs, offering a soothing respite after a day on the slopes. While Japan only recently lifted its restrictions on tourism, witnessing a surge in visitors, it has quickly become the fastest-growing global travel destination for Gen-Z and Millennials.