The growth of OTAs, dynamic pricing and themed experiences –trends for the attractions industry

The growth of OTAs, dynamic pricing and themed experiences –trends for the attractions industry

Ahead of the Arival 360 Conference in Berlin from March 2-4, three of the event’s expert speakers have revealed their top trend for the attractions sector in 2024.

Hundreds of representatives from companies across the tours, activities, attractions and experiences sectors are expected to attend the Arival 360 conference next month.  For the first time in Europe, the event will feature a dedicated Attractions Forum.  The forum will help attractions businesses tackle issues like technology, over-tourism and how to develop successful guest experiences for visitor attractions, large operators and cultural institutions.

Ahead of the forum, these are Arival 360 speakers’ top three trends for 2024: 

  1. The continued growth of online travel agencies.  News reports consistently point towards a continued growth in the OTA sector, and this could have a positive knock-on effect for attractions companies that make them part of their sales strategies.  Peter Muttitt, who runs a consultancy, PM Consulting, for the attractions, tours and experiences industrysays: “While there are probably things to be said on topics such on artificial intelligence or immersive experiences, I don’t think attractions companies should forget that where they will see genuine growth is via the online travel agencies.  As the industry continues to become more connected, OTAs will command more of the distribution landscape and become even more important as a sales channel.” 
  1. Attractions companies should lean in ondynamic and variable pricing to better serve their customer segments and optimize revenue. “Our research shows not all travelers are created equal, and there is clear demand for different experiences and service levels,” said Douglas Quinby, co-founder and CEO of Arival.  “Some are happy to sacrifice for the cheapest ticket, while plenty of others will gladly pay more to get more in return. Attraction and experience operators who don’t take advantage of this are leaving money on the table.”
  1. The emergence of specific themes, such as film tourism, will become more popular as people seek out new and unique experiences – and this will help drive tourism to lesser-known locations.  As Ellie Warren, Global Director of Experiences at HotelBeds explains, “Set-jetting- also known as film tourism – will continue to rise. Dubrovnik, and New Zealand have long capitalised on their on-screen presence, but in 2024 we project even more people will be flocking to lesser-known destinations across Ireland, Malta and Sicily to recreate their favourite scenes. With films like Gladiator re-booting, and the increased pressure on top attractions like the colosseum, we are expecting travellers to seek out ‘hidden gem’ locations, more closely integrated with niche on-screen settings that will give film/screen enthusiasts a unique experience.”



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