The last few months, as we all know, have been incredibly tough for the travel industry. Many people have lost their jobs and businesses, worlds they never thought could change so dramatically. However, with the growing sense of optimism on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean that a vaccine is looming, including Dr Fauci (Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases), this could be the starting fun for one of the biggest releases of booking energy in the history of travel.
Never in our lifetime has a population been so suppressed by pandemic restrictions, we are like coiled springs missing the new era of freedom to travel easily around the globe and for the most part unemployment figures have been better than estimates. As soon as the vaccine is announced that it is to be used for health professionals and the elderly, this will trigger the start of the end of this crisis and with it an unparalleled demand for travel, with people who have cancelled, coupled with people desperate for a holiday. For the most who have kept their job, their actual disposable income will have increased given the lack of anything to go and spend your money on over the previous months and this will give rise to the “I need a break” crowd to give travel a golden summer in 2021.
I expect the med to be packed in 2021 and with such a demand for an extended season, this will potentially produce a record year once the vaccine starts to filter across the population.
Cruises will rebound strongly, especially short haul cruises and with deployments being announced you can see the drive for short haul cruises being the spring board back to the number of 18/19.
However, the travel industry have to be ready. Customer service, sales, operators, your staff have been hit with a wave of refunds and disappearing customers over the last few months which will turn into optimistic happy customers very shortly. The brands who can harness and galvanise their teams will take full advantage!
So fingers crossed we are almost there and when that announcement goes off be ready and enjoy!