Are Airports The New Wellness Hubs?

Wellness tourism is on the rise — here’s how airlines are tapping into the trend.

As borders reopen and restrictions ease, many consumers are itching to travel again. And whilst adventure and sight-seeing are still a priority, research from the Global Wellness Institute (GWI) has found that many travellers are jet-setting abroad with new values in mind, including getting back to nature, sustainable travel and mental wellness.

This is no new trend — the GWI reported in 2017 that travellers spent $639 billion on 850 million wellness trips worldwide. The post-pandemic era is set to see a 21 per cent annual increase in wellness tourism through 2025, with travellers seeking rejuvenation, recovery and a sense of slow living to escape from the chaos of the everyday.

Whilst wellness destinations such as Bali, India and the Mediterranean are set to see a huge influx of wellness-minded travellers, many airlines have also tapped into the wellness tourism market to offer state-of-the-art wellness centres and experiences for travellers. Here are some of the top airport and in-flight wellness experiences for 2022.

La Première Sisley in the Air France lounge.

La Première Sisley beauty institute at Charles de Gaulle Airport

Offering “a moment of pleasure and well-being celebrating the French art of travel” for Air France’s La Première customers in Paris, travellers can experience on-the-go wellness rituals ranging from 30-minute signature facials to personalised 90-minute anti-jet-lag treatments. Each treatment ritual is designed to have a beneficial effect on the skin and mind, awaken the senses and revitalise the body.

Treat™ at John F. Kennedy Airport

Terminal 4 in the New York airport plays host to Treat’s first brick-and-mortar location, offering an upscale health and wellness centre with access to on-demand medical care and personalised services such as rapid PCR tests, IV drip-infusion therapy, flu shots, and virtual yoga and fitness sessions. Guests can use the Treat app to schedule appointments, store health records and reserve private rooms for yoga and meditation.

Singapore Airlines x Golden Door In-Flight Wellness

Singapore Airlines has teamed up with Californian-based health and wellness retreat Golden Door to offer travellers a new roster of health-focused meals, exercise, and wellbeing options during flights. Golden Door’s chefs, nutritionists, and personal trainers have developed a broad range of menus, exercise and stretching programmes to help travellers enjoy improved nutrition, sleep, relaxation, and energy levels on board long-haul flights.

Vitality Wellbeing & Fitness Centre at Doha Hamad Airport

With a temperature-controlled indoor pool, fully equipped gym and squash courts, hydrotherapy tub and range of anti-jet-lag treatments, Doha’s wellbeing hub offers travellers the ultimate pre-flight wellbeing check. Each spa treatment is results-focused and designed specifically for the needs of today’s traveller.

Vitality Wellbeing & Fitness Centre, Doha’s luxury airport spa.

Timeless Spa at Dubai International Airport

Travellers can stop by Emirates Terminal 3 in Dubai to rejuvenate the mind, body and soul. Timeless Spa offers everything from a de-stress back massage to reflex therapy, 30-minute facials, Thai body stretch, luxury nail therapy, hair shaping and beard trimming.

QANTAS Inflight Workouts and Meditations

With guided videos for stretching and movement, QANTAS’ inflight workouts are designed to help travellers stay mobile and energised during long-haul flights. The videos are made in partnership with Physitrack, The University of Melbourne and Sports Medicine Australia, and can be followed with minimal disturbance to other passengers. The airline also offers 12-minute meditation sessions, guiding listeners through an inner-journey towards calm and mindfulness mid-flight.

Ora Oxygen at Calgary International Airport

Ora Oxygen provides travellers with a literal breath of fresh air with their premium oxygen therapy treatments. The treatment is designed to help minimise the side effects of pressurised air and sitting in cramped seats, and can be done alongside classic spa treatments such as facials, manicures, aromatherapy and deep tissue massages. Over 90 per cent of the body’s energy is created by oxygen, and Ora Oxygen’s mission is to re-energise and revitalise.

Hawaiian Airlines Ola Pono

Travellers can say “aloha” to the ultimate in-flight wellness experience with the Ola Pono series. Travellers are provided with guided pre- and post-flight wellness sessions, including stretches, exercises and movement prompts, as well as an ocean safety video for visitors to Hawaii, and a guided culinary experience showcasing the island’s most unique, sustainably-sourced ingredients and local farmers’ and chefs’ connection to the land.

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