Altered Travel Patterns

In its latest tracking study of American travellers, Longwoods International is reporting that after 18 months of living with the pandemic, travel patterns have been altered, at least for the time being.

With about half of travellers changing their travel plans because of coronavirus, 32% are choosing drive destinations over fly destinations, and a similar percentage have shifted from international trips to domestic ones.

Other changes include taking fewer or even no trips, while some travellers switch from urban to rural destinations.

About a third of travellers have postponed travel specifically because of the recent surge of the delta variant of COVID-19.

Amir Eylon, president and CEO of Longwoods International, said that: “The data clearly shows how the pandemic has profoundly changed the U.S. travel industry, not only the number of people travelling, but where they are going and what they are doing when they do travel.”

And he observed: “What we don’t know yet is how many of these changes are temporary, and how many will be the new normal for both travellers and the industry.”

Over 80% of travellers expected service levels from travel suppliers — hotels, restaurants, attractions, airlines, etc. — to be equal to or higher than before the pandemic. However, a quarter of travellers judged the quality of service on their last trip to be below what they had experienced prior to COVID-19.

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