Now that the lockdown is gradually lifting and our attitudes to travel are getting a little less timorous, we might find ourselves spending the odd weekend away from home. It’s tempting to look forward to a time when everything will be back to ‘normal’, but at the same time it’s unclear what ‘normal’ will look like, even after Covid-19 has been more-or-less dealt with.
So, what sort of travel trends might we expect to persist for the long-term?
The first possibility to consider is that weekend breaks won’t take place at the weekend at all. There are a few reasons to suppose that weekday travel might become more popular. Firstly, sparser crowds mean less chance of contracting a virus. Secondly, during tough economic times, we might look to save every possible penny. Finally, many of us might find that our working arrangements have gotten more flexible, and thus weekday travel is more practical.
For much the same reasons, we might start to look beyond the traditional tourist season. After all, travel at the height of summer doesn’t look quite so glamorous when airports are significantly busier and the risk of catching the virus is inevitably higher.
You’ll find hand sanitizer and facemasks everywhere along your trip, from the hotel to the taxi to the airport to all of the restaurants, museums and water-parks you’ll visit. The tourist industry understands the value of consumer confidence; a nervous tourist is one that’s unlikely to spend quite so much on their travels. Plus, an outbreak is extremely bad for business. If neglect is the cause, then the business responsible might find the reputational damage difficult to repair.
As such, you should expect strict hygiene precautions everywhere you go for a while yet.
Lesser-known destinations might get a boost
While this time last year we might have considered a few dozen well-trodden cities, now we might be more willing to branch out to lesser-known parts of the world. While the virus is at large, more of us will be opting for hidden gems rather than bustling tourist towns. And if our experience is good, we’ll tell our friends, and they’ll visit. Thus, now is a great opportunity for those more remote destinations to make an impression that’ll last for decades.
Having a fixed itinerary can also help limit the risk of getting ill. As such, pre-arranged tours make a sensible choice. In Italy, escorted tours allow you to see Sicily, Venice, and a whole range of hidden gems in between and smaller group numbers will ensure you have a safe experience.
Older people are, statistically, at greater risk from the novel coronavirus. A natural consequence of this is that, on average, members of this particular group will be looking to limit their risk. That means more domestic holidays and fewer overseas ones. Overseas destinations might therefore decide that it’s time to explicitly target a younger customer base. Islands like Ibiza have successfully transitioned from party destinations to more reserved, relaxing getaways. It may be that many hotspots make a transition in the other direction.