When you think of luxury travel, do you picture private jets, mega-yachts, exclusive islands, and free-flowing Cristal champagne? Yes, extravagance plays a part in luxury travel – but there’s so much more to it than that. We dive into five of the most common misconceptions about luxury travel – and why they’ve got it all wrong.
1. Luxury travel doesn’t give you meaningful experiences
It is often assumed that luxury travellers only want to see the glossy icons and polished attractions of a destination… but we’ve found this to be one of the most common misconceptions about luxury travel. More luxury travellers are looking for authentic and meaningful experiences, where they can really get to the heart of a destination. At Luxury Gold, we know a great adventure is all about meaningful experiences and the people you meet, and that’s why our guests love our special VIP experiences, Chairman’s Collection, and Make Travel Matter Experiences.
You could meet Tracey at her Irish farmhouse for a home-hosted culinary experience. Or ride a rickshaw in Jaipur, driven by local women from low-income households. You’ll hear their stories first-hand and help support their families and communities.
We’ll take you behind the scenes for private after-hour visits to places like Schönbrunn Palace in Austria, Luxor Temple in Egypt, Doge’s Palace in Venice, and the Imperial Citadel in Vietnam. You’ll explore these remarkable sites with expert guides and meet people personally involved with the history of these places.
You can even meet legendary locals with exclusive experiences from The Chairman’s Collection, like the Duchess of Northumberland in England or Princess Anita von Hohenberg in Austria. Meet Patrick Guinness in Ireland or Marchese Mazzei at his ancestral Tuscan home, Castello di Fonterutoli. Curated and inspired by our past Chairman, Mr. Stanley Tollman, and his life in travel, these are truly unparalleled luxury travel experiences.
2. It isn’t responsible or sustainable
Luxury travel is often portrayed as billionaires and A-listers waltzing around the world on private jets and mega-yachts. But that’s not the whole story. Luxury travel doesn’t have to make a massive carbon footprint – it can be a responsible and sustainable experience that gives back to the planet. And we know that our luxury travel experiences are only enhanced and enriched by our pledge to travel responsibly.
It is so crucial to leave a positive impact on the people and places we visit, so Luxury Gold has made a commitment to Make Travel Matter through the TreadRight Foundation, our not-for-profit organisation. Our luxury tours include Make Travel Matter experiences that support local employment, preserve history and culture, and protect and rehabilitate wildlife populations around the world.
Some of our remarkable Make Travel Matter experiences include helping to save the Iberian Lynx in Portugal and preserving the Giant’s Causeway, Northern Ireland. You could help protect the waterfalls of Plitvice, Croatia. Or meet traditional weavers in Peru and supporting the people working to keep this 10,000-year-old Andean textile tradition alive.
We’re also committed to The Travel Corporation’s five-year sustainability strategy, based on the United Nations’ Global Goal, to address our impact on people, wildlife, and the planet. So you can enjoy a responsible luxury travel experience with Luxury Gold, safe in the knowledge that you’re leaving a lasting, positive legacy.
3. It’s just for wealthy retirees
One of the most prevalent misconceptions about luxury travel is that it’s only for wealthy, older people. However, the luxury traveller cannot be boxed in by one definition. Our guests come from a diverse range of backgrounds, from young and old couples to solo travellers and multi-generational families. We offer them a true luxury experience – the ability to create a personalised, handcrafted experience to suit each unique traveller, regardless of age or interests.
When you travel with Luxury Gold, you’ll be accompanied by an expert Travelling Concierge who will take care of everything so you can relax and savour the moment. They will understand your desires, passions, and preferences before your tour and throughout. They’ll work to personalise your journey with special details and touches to make your holiday truly exceptional. Our Travelling Concierges are master planners, ready to go the extra mile and make your dreams a reality. Whether you’re ready for a romantic couple’s retreat or a family holiday, our luxury tours can be tailored to you.
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4. It only means 5-star city hotel chains
When we think about luxury travel, we often picture crisp white sheets, glitzy furnishings, and top-floor city views. And while we do love a 5-star city hotel, our luxury tours certainly don’t end there. We scour the globe to uncover the most unique and exceptional hotels that offer luxurious comfort and excellent service, all while immersing you in the culture and history of your destination. Luxury travel isn’t just about 5-star stays – it’s about 5-star experiences. We hand-select hotels with a story, where you meet local hosts, and connect with your destination on a deeper level.
You could journey to the heart of the South African wilderness at the Lion Sands Game Reserve, a luxury safari lodge where you stargaze and watch the local wildlife from your deck. Stay at Ashford Castle in Ireland, a 12th-century estate where contemporary luxury meets historic grandeur and you can roam 350 acres of lush woodlands. Sleep on the edge of a rushing river surrounded by the beautiful Fiordland at Milford Sound Lodge in New Zealand. Or wake up to views of the beautiful Mont Blanc and the Jet d’Eau on Lake Geneva at Hotel d’Angleterre. With elegant design, original artwork, and cocktails served at the famous Leopard Bar and Cigar Lounge, this is an unforgettable luxury stay.
5. Active people won’t enjoy luxury travel
A common misconception about luxury travel is that it’s all about lounging on yachts or soaking in spas. For some luxury travellers, peaceful, relaxing experiences are the goal. But if you like to get active on your holidays, you’ll find that luxury travel is for you too. We offer different activity levels and ways to travel on our luxury trips, from a leisurely to an active pace.
Our dynamic tours feature longer distances, with 4+ miles of walking on some days with steep hills. You’ll also have a variety of morning start times so you can seize the day, and regular evening activities to maximise your time. On our Ultimate Italy tour, you can take a walking tour through the cobbled streets of Rome to discover the hidden gems, and cruise the Cinque Terre coastline, dipping into the ocean and exploring medieval quarters. On our Majestic Japan tour, you’ll explore the indigenous bamboo forest at Giouji Temple and ride the Kachi-Kachi Ropeway Cable Car in Mount Fuji. If you want to turn it up a notch, talk to your Travelling Concierge about how you can pack even more adventure into your luxury trip.
Luxury travel isn’t about aloof, artificial experiences, only for celebrities and billionaires. It’s about unique, personalised experiences and gaining privileged access to people, places, and knowledge. We use our extensive connections to craft extraordinary tours to go beyond the tourist attractions and 5-star hotels. We connect you with real people and meaningful experiences, all while leaving a lasting positive impact on the world.
What are some myths and misconceptions about luxury travel you’ve come across? Let us know in the comments below…