The Opportunities of Luxury Travel in Finland

The objective of this thesis was to examine what potential Finland possesses regarding luxury travel. Currently luxury travel is almost non-existent in Finland, accordingly, the factors supporting and contradicting luxury travel were distinguished in this study.

The theoretical framework of this thesis was based on literature and electronic sources on luxury. Asian travellers were selected as the target group of this study, thus the theoretical part described their travel habits in Finland. Moreover, the thesis also covered aspects of luxury travel in Finnish tourism. Eco-tourism was combined with luxury travel because eco-luxury travel was predicted to meet a future demand. Three unique destinations were chosen that could be developed as luxury destinations were selected. These included Saimaa, Turku archipelago and Lapland.

The approach of the survey was qualitative and it was conducted by means of theme interview. The interview requests were sent to approximately ten professionals, of which four replied. Two interviewees obtained the questions by e-mail due to the long geographical distance between interviewer and interviewee.

The results indicated that Finland has great opportunities in luxury travel, however, its potential has not been fully exploited yet. According to the interviews, the biggest question appeared to be the profitability of eco-luxury travel in Finnish tourism. The results highlighted the fact that Asians represent a potential target group for luxury travel in Finland, especially in wellness tourism. Based on the results, it can be concluded that Finland has excellent prerequisites to develop luxury destinations. However, not enough willing actors exist in this field and moreover, it is not regarded as a profitable business.

A change in attitude is demanded to enter the realms of luxury travel, in other words passion, desire and vision are required in this field. In Finland this is not financially beneficial yet, thus you should not enter the business in hopes of making considerable profit. In the future Finland should upgrade its products and services to an international level in order to avoid stagnation in product quality.

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