Post-Covid: from mass tourism to space tourism

Wooden hut Lushna
Leah Woznica

Towards the end of mass tourism 

This phenomenon appeared in the 1960s with the growth in purchasing power and the rise in living standards, and has continued to grow and impact the planet: global warming, natural sites under threat, local populations under pressure, etc. The many harmful effects of "over-tourism" have been well known for several years now. 

This phenomenon, which accelerated with the democratisation of the airline industry in the early 1990s, has given rise to new notions denouncing the limits of its practice. For example, "touristophobia" refers to the resentment of the local population towards tourists. This concept has emerged in major European cities, including Barcelona and Lisbon. The rejection of foreign visitors by the inhabitants of the same region adds to the disadvantages caused by centralised tourism.

Thus, mass tourism is not viable, whether from an environmental, societal or economic point of view. It is therefore necessary to rethink the modes of tourism consumption by favouring responsible, less dense and more respectful tourism. This is how the notion of space is reconsidered within the tourist industry. Indeed, it would make it possible to limit the negative impacts mentioned above, while remaining in phase with consumer trends that are moving towards more responsible alternative practices.

Whether it is tourism professionals, government organisations or simply tourists themselves, everyone has a role to play in this new era of travel. The most important thing would be to avoid using "greenwashing" as a marketing method to give oneself an ethical image, but to really think and act in favour of sustainable tourism. Thus, travellers are now considered as consumers of their own holidays, really thinking about the consequences of their practices. 


Values tourism: a commitment to the future

Today, and even more so since the Covid-19 crisis, travellers are seeking to soften their impact on the environment. We are witnessing a real interest in the notion of sustainability, the objective being to better consider the future by integrating environmental impact into our daily practices. Indeed, in her recent studies on post-Covid tourism, Armelle Solelhac, founder of the communications agency Switch and an expert in marketing strategy, has identified 8 major trends: space tourism, a frictionless world, hyper tourism, anytime, anywhere tourism, green tourism, micro tourism, emergency tourism and regenerative tourism. 

Undoubtedly, these notions refer to current trends towards ecology, minimalism and well-being. With the global Covid-19 pandemic, there has been a general awareness of over-consumption. As a result, travel is being seen in a different light, with an interest in local tourism, whether within the country of origin or in the immediate environment. There has also been a boom in outdoor activities : tree climbing, hiking, etc., which confirms the growing struggle against mass tourism.

In addition, there is a real interest in transparency,authenticity and locality. Tourism is therefore reinventing itself with more human and gentler forms. Indeed, visitors are looking fornew experiences, rich in meaning and which allow them to create links with the inhabitants. Thus, there is a real emphasis on heritage through the praise of know-how, crafts and the various regional and territorial identities. 

It is a question of reconsidering travellers by integrating the local population into the new tourism strategies. By balancing the attractiveness and sustainability of territories, a new, more inclusive and singular approach is favoured, which gives priority to the local. As a phenomenon involving a whole geographical area, tourism must be rethought by considering urban planning, means of transport, the environment, but also cultural and sporting events. Thus, new tourist products are emerging, based on the environment, sport and culture. This new approach aims to offer innovative experiences that are adapted to each place and destination. 


Space and privacy for tomorrow's tourism

According to Jean-François Rial, CEO of the tour operator Voyageurs du monde since 1996, one of the largest French travel agencies, "95% of the world's tourists visit 5% of the planet". This impressive figure confirms the exclusive attractiveness of certain regions of the world to the detriment of other less-developed territories with strong tourist potential. The trend is therefore towards the consideration of new tourist areas, the development of which would enable the upgrading of municipalities through job creation, social development and an economic revival of the territory.

 We are witnessing a new relationship with time and space, in which reconnection with oneself, the relationship with others and theexperience of immersion are privileged. Indeed, more and more travellers need to isolate themselves far from the crowds in order to relax and enjoy the moment. They are looking for less popular destinations, sometimes even in preserved sites, allowing real relaxation and a return to the essential.

In addition, a new style ofspace planning has emerged, , with a more circular approach. Indeed, the fashion is for a clever layout that makes it possible to define precise trajectories within the same site, so that visitors do not cross paths. This flow management technique aims to create zones of intimacy, and is fully in line with the trend for space and wellness tourism. The craze for ecolodges This development now offers several possibilities, depending on the type of accommodation. This development now leaves several possibilities according to preferences: the wooden dome for a natural and ecological aspect, the Lushna wooden hut for a romantic stay, the Halo dome with a breathtaking panoramic view, or the elegant and minimalist Koda house...

Finally, the Covid-19 crisis, although catastrophic, forces us to reconsider our practices and values. Through the implementation of new tourism strategies, tomorrow's tourism will be based on proximity, solidarity and sustainability. The objective is to better consider and respect the territories by favouring short circuits, soft mobility and interest in local culture. The new way of travelling thus tends to give more value to the discovery of a place and its inhabitants.

Founded in 2011, FUGU® specialises in Nomadic Structures & Innovative Architectures for the event and hotel industry

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