Travel experiences

A recent report on a new army of sites focussing on travel “experiences” (elephant rides, culinary tours, tribal treks) is interesting because it highlights an interesting fact – online travel comes up with fresh new ideas at breakneck speed, compared to other online categories. After the juggernaut of user-generated content transformed travel, it was about time for the next wave! Still, the trend of “activity vacations” and a “lifestyle trips” is rather advanced in concept! One might argue (as the article does) that it takes the spirit of discovery out of travel. But “experience vacations” seem designed for the work-while-on-vacation types who may miss out on the adventures of a new place because they are busy checking office email or taking calls on their cellphones! Imagine closing a new deal while bungee jumping or ice- fishing while addressing customer queries! It may also benefit those looking to cut down the not inconsiderable time that shoppers must spend researching destinations post-purchase.

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Vijay Dandapani

Co-founder and president of a New York based hotel company for 24 years. Grew the firm to five hotels in Manhattan and also developed a greenfield project at MacArthur airport, New York. Speaker at numerous prestigious forums including Economy Hotels World Asia, Lodging Conference, NYU, Columbia University Real Estate Roundtable, Baruch College's Zicklin School and ALIS. President and ceo of New York City Hotel Association since January 2017.

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