2013 Travel Trends (So Far) Slideshow

From emerging destinations to global trends, here’s our mid-year roundup

Healthier Menus Across the Board

As we predicted, menus at travel destinations are being revamped to offer healthier options. Airlines have been doing this for several months, and as announced last week, U.S. National Parks have also introduced new regulations requiring the service of healthy food options. For the most part, though, these menu alterations aren’t rewriting traditional fast food and sweets; new options are typically served alongside their less-healthy predecessors. 

Worldwide, McDonald’s Assimilates Menus and Attempts to Increase Transparency

With increasing public concern about health and the food system, it seems like McDonald’s (for probably obvious reasons) is always up for criticism. How the mega-chain reacts to these critiques differs by country; Australians now have an app available that tracks the origins of a specific product’s meat, which suggests that the country is concerned with how and where its food is produced.

Meanwhile, outlets in Italy are attempting to impress consumers by serving versions of traditional Italian dishes instead of reproducing its American menu. Pasta salad with tuna, tomatoes, peppers, capers, olives, and oregano, anyone?     

Room Service Is "Out?"

Wikimedia/Michael Plutchok

In an effort to simplify food service and save money, the New York Hilton Midtown announced earlier this month that it will cancel its room service option. Jobs, in addition to the occasional breakfast-in-bed indulgence, will be lost in a move that could start a wave throughout the industry. We’re waiting to see what happens, but industry experts have said that very few, if any, hotels actually make a profit from the service nowadays.

The World Is "Brooklynizing"

We foresaw the "Brooklynizing" of cities across the country around the new year. This tendency toward the establishment and growth of young, involved, and creative (if not sometimes pretentious) communities is not just a domestic trend, however. As The New York Times T Magazine reported a couple of months back, "Brooklynizing" is a global fad occurring in cities like Paris, London, Stockholm, and Berlin.

Beijing Isn’t China’s Only (Food) Capital…

You may have seen it, but we recently released our list of the 101 Best Restaurants in Asia for 2013. China topped our list as the country with the most overall number of entries, with Beijing coming in first for the number of ranked restaurants in one city. Our honorable mention, however, is Shanghai, which is considered to have its own cuisine. Travel + Leisure also highlighted the city as part of its 2013 food issue. Check out our list for a complete roundup of restaurants that made the cut.