As the stay-at-home orders are lifting and people are tentatively stepping back out into public, people are going to begin traveling again, whether it’s car trips to visit family or overseas trips because the prices are so cheap. People are still urging and practicing caution, but they’re also ready to return back to their usual lives so they can start enjoying themselves again.
In early April, Forbes magazine asked 12 travel experts what we could expect the travel industry to do once people begin heading out again. Here are a few of those travel predictions.
People will flock to restaurants
Right now, family members and close friends are relying heavily on video-talking apps like Zoom, FaceTime and Facebook Messenger to stay connected, and they’re doing carry-out and delivery for restaurant food (like Central Florida’s efforts). While there are those of us who are grateful for such applications and food options, many of us are itching to be with their friends and family out in public once again.
Now, as restaurants are opening up again, many states are limiting occupancy to 25% only, but some establishments are still sticking with their carry-out and delivery menu options only. Be sure to check with your restaurant before you visit; see if they’re taking reservations and if you need one to get in.
The behaviors of hotel guests will change
It is no secret that the hotel industry has been affected severely by the pandemic. Frequent hotel guests of hotels have been cancelling reservations and trips, causing hotel owners to reduce staff or shut down their hotels temporarily. Once we start traveling again, hotel owners anticipate a change of behavior from their guests.
Hans Pfister, co-owner and President of a chain of hotels in Panama, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica, told Forbes that after this social distancing experiment subsides, guests will want to be outside more, as well as have more privacy.
“I expect consumers to seek out more off-the-beaten path experiences, private accommodations and adventure activities where they are able to be outdoors and surrounded by open air,” he said.”
Similarly, Larry Korman, President and co-CEO of AKA, predicts that leisure travel will rise sooner than other kinds.
“Our feeling is that travelers will now be more selective, and think more carefully about details in service, cleanliness, space, size and security — whereas in the past, price may have driven a traveler to sacrifice on some of these key elements,” Korman said. He also foresees business travelers booking longer stays in extended-stay properties that offer certain amenities for traveling professionals.
Considering that the virus is spread through human interaction, travel experts believe that travelers will change their mode of travel. Lisa Burns, the Executive Director of the Finger Lakes Regional Tourism Council of New York, predicts that people will be more prone to drive to their destinations rather than take public transit.
Dan Yates, managing director of Pitchup.com, suggested that even if the government encourages public outings and travels before summertime, people will seek to stay at less densely-populated areas like campgrounds. He also believes that these bookings will be short and last minute, satisfying the need to get away from home while having an enjoyable time.
Will you travel once it’s okay to do so? Do you have any plans for the summer? And are you changing them or keeping them the same? Share your travel predictions with us on our Facebook page, or on our Twitter stream. You can also find us on our Instagram page at @TravelproIntl.
Photo credit: Amy G (Flickr, Creative Commons 2.0)