May 25, 2021
Travel has not been part of most people’s agenda for a long time. Ever since the pandemic broke out back in March 2020, non-essential travel has been banned in most parts of the world. And while country-specific bans continue to limit travel and tourism, vaccination rollout programs are going strong.
Holiday bookings have grown in the recent months as economies reopen and welcome tourists for travel. But will the new travel world be different to pre-pandemic holidaymaking?
Travelling will not be as easy
COVID-19-related travel conditions could complicate holidays for the foreseeable future. One of the measures that many countries will implement is the ‘Safe Pass’ or the ‘Green Pass’. Travellers may be required to get vaccinated to travel.
For example, the European Union has recently agreed to reopen its borders to fully vaccinated international travellers and those travelling from Covid safe countries. Several countries in the E.U. will be accepting travellers who have received E.U. approved vaccines, such as those from Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson.
While the E.U. will be rolling out general travel restrictions, individual member states will be able to adjust their requirements based on their own epidemiological criteria.
Many people will shy away from international travel due to the numerous restrictions imposed by various governments. This means that domestic holidays, also known as ‘staycations’, will gain popularity. A similar trend happened in mid-2020 when some countries reopened – people did not want to skip their annual summer vacation and opted to travel somewhere local.
“The wanderlust to explore what’s close by, you know, has in particular for the younger generations potentially durable benefits,”
said Jeff Hurst, president of online vacation home rental site Vrbo in Austin, Texas, and marketing co-lead at parent company Expedia Group. “You’re not going to be in the air as much.”
“It is a different type of economically sustainable travel, and that you can invest more in local communities and things you might feel a different type of connectiveness to.”
Skipping air travel altogether may seem more desirable to hypochondriacs or germophobes rather than potentially exposing themselves to the virus at the airport. In addition to this, domestic travel may be significantly cheaper but just as fun and exciting.
Some people who have followed strict stay-at-home orders may have developed something known as quarantine fatigue. Restrictive lifestyles for a prolonged period of time may develop stress, irritability and anxiety in people. In 2021, more people than ever are looking into taking trips or holidays to venture out of their day-to-day life.
Longer stay holidays will be more likely in 2021. Since most people have been working remotely, it’s likely that this newfound flexibility will inspire them to stay at their destinations for longer than usual.
The world’s desire and appetite for travel has never been this strong. Vaccination rollouts have given people hope for a normal life, both work and travel-wise. But before choosing your next destination, it’s a good idea to interpret the epidemiological situation and travel restrictions. And while the travel industry may never be the same again, there finally seems to be light at the end of the pandemic tunnel.