05 JUNE, 2020

The rapid spread of COVID-19 has brought the travel and tourism sector to a complete shutdown. As the entire world is under the pandemic lockdown, border closures and travel restrictions have particularly hit this industry hard. People still have unfulfilled travel plans in their bucket list. But nobody knows when the tourism will resume since the impact of the recent outbreak could last longer than expected.

However, the restrictions on the travel will eventually be lifted, and the situation will improve gradually. But, this does not mean that things will precisely be normal as they were before COVID-19. When travel does begin again, the priorities and plans will change. People will first choose a road trip to a place closer to home or travel domestically, before planning an international trip. The travel expenses are likely to be higher than before. Hence, the banks and other financial institutions are chalking out travel loans for globetrotters.  

We are looking at the new normal for travelling. It could mean a shift to private rentals over hotels and an increase in the use of travel insurance.

  • More road trips : Post COVID-19, people may opt for more road trips in their own vehicles, than depending on public transport.

  • Vacation rentals over hotels : As social-distancing is the key to control the spread of coronavirus, people may choose less crowded vacation rentals like villas or private rentals over hotels and lodges. Isolated rentals are likely to attract more travelers as it would be a cleaner and safer alternative.

  • Cashless spending : Physical contact with people increases the risk of contracting the COVID-19 virus. Hence, a notable change that is likely to come while travelling is cashless spending. People will rely more on cards and other contactless methods over ready cash payments to prevent the coronavirus risk.

  • Increase in the use of travel insurance : People will actively consider opting for a travel insurance post COVID-19 lockdown. Travel insurance can protect you from financial, medical risks, and losses occurring while travelling.

  • Personal travel advisors : Travel advisors not only help you plan trips but also guide you whenever things go wrong during the journey. As more and more people are struggling to get refunds and cancellations done, people may seek the help of travel advisors post COVID-19 for their travel plans.

While the other industries can recover fast, the COVID-19 pandemic will have a more substantial impact on the travel and tourism sector. The tourism industry needs time to heal, because of the restrictions on the movement of people.

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