While the travel industry has been making steady gains over the last year and optimism for 2022 is high as it recovers from the impact of the global pandemic, the war in Ukraine has some in the industry nervous about Europe’s tourism recovery.
The latest MMGY Travel Intelligence surveyed hundreds of U.S. travellers planning to visit Europe about the war to understand its impact on traveller sentiment and behaviour.
Key findings from that survey reveal that:
- 62% of U.S. travellers cited concerns about the war in Ukraine spreading to nearby countries as a factor impacting plans to travel to Europe, which is twice the number (31%) who cited COVID-19 health and safety concerns as a factor.
- 47% of travellers want to wait and see how the situation in Ukraine evolves before making plans to visit Europe this year.
- 50% of respondents said they were concerned about possible delays and cancellations of flights, trains and cruises, as well as the potential for border closures.
According to MMGY Global CEO, Clayton Reid during the progression of COVID-19, travel sentiment turned positive much more quickly than was originally suggested by survey instruments in the midst of the crisis. And there is a possibility that this reaction could repeat itself with the current situation based on today’s results.
Reid pointed out that: “Now is the time for travel providers to address this hesitancy around European travel by reminding consumers of flexible cancellation and rebooking policies. Much like at the height of the Omicron variant, we can’t predict how the situation may escalate; but travellers should feel confident in booking because of the flexible policies most airlines, hotels and OTAs introduced in response to COVID-19.”
And he concluded: “It is also my belief that this hesitancy is short-lived and that prior to the peak travel season to Europe, sentiment will return to much more positive levels.”
Go to www.mmgyintel.com for more.