Vaccinated or Not, People Want to Travel

Tourism experts all predicted this was going to be a long road to recovery and Covid-19 spikes correlate to the economic slowdown predicted. The tourism industry may be stalling a little bit in its recovery efforts as we start out the fall season. Covid-19 variants cause travel disruptions once again, governments continue to face the challenges of balancing health and economic recovery.  The delta variant’s influence on the travel industry is being felt all over the world and the pent-up demand saw earlier this year has now dwindled. But let us focus on the positive, traveler sentiment and desire to travel remains strong. A recent survey found that 80% of active leisure travelers who were already vaccinated planned to take a trip within the next six months. Interestingly enough, 81% of travelers who don’t plan on being vaccinated said the same thing. This leads one to conclude that vaccinated or unvaccinated, people are going to travel.  All fingers are pointing towards a busy holiday season no matter the destination, as 54% of Americans say they plan on traveling during the last few months of the year.  The most eager generation with a travel-ready mindset are not surprisingly our younger Millennials and Generation Z, a whopping 77%!  Millennials and Gen Zrs’ are also likelier to be supportive of pandemic protocols and will go through any required testing if needed to escape reality for a bit and head out on a vacay. That’s not quite the case with our Baby boomer generation. According to a recent AARP report it stated that even with vaccines being distributed, boomers are still concerned about traveling. Health concerns and travel restrictions are the main barriers to travel for this group. So for now, the majority report prioritizing more domestic road trips and traveling with family, avoiding crowded destinations for the holidays.  Unvaccinated people, while eager to travel are increasingly required to show proof of negative PCR test or proof of vaccination before they can cruise, book certain destinations, attend college, or return to work, which is causing added layers of frustration to the travel (or any) experience.

As travelers of all generations start to plan ahead for the holiday season, the delta variant and its effects are closely being watched by all. And by all, I really mean by ALL.  Health officials, governments, industries, schools, unvaccinated and vaccinated, you name it, everyone is carefully watching the Covid-19 numbers. Waiting, to see what is going to happen as people everywhere strive their hardest to get back to “normal”. But we have all seen what getting back to “normal” means and it will have its consequences.  Already being reported on the evening news an expected spike in cases in larger numbers the end of September/early October. That’s not good. This month will also determine if more stimulus is coming into the hands of Americans.  It’s almost as if everyone is in a wait-and-see what happens before careful planning their next trip.  Ski chalet or warm beach destination,  31% of those traveling plan to meet up with friends/family this holiday season, and the welcoming reputation of the destination towards all types of travelers both vaccinated and non-vaccinated is important to the majority of Americans.  How businesses and brands choose to treat these two new segments of consumers will determine their rate of economic recovery and future profitability.

Where are you planning to travel to for the holidays?

Until next Time ~ Ayri

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