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Traveling Post-COVID

Posted on April 19, 2023 by Robert Hasamski




NEW TRENDS IN TRAVEL AND TOURISM


Global travel and tourism today is nothing like we've seen since before the COVID-19 pandemic, which had halted most movement and human interaction for nearly two years. Now that everything is returning to full-throttle, we are seeing all sorts of new trends and spikes in traveling. People are returning to their normal lives, but they are feeling a newfound urge to get out there and see and experience what the world has to show and offer. We are seeing new trends and methods of consumer tourism in ways through virtual reality (VR), bleisure travel, health/recreational travel, and ecological travel.


Virtual reality is creating a new competitive edge for travel firms as it allows tourists to see landmarks, hotels, and attractions in advance. Tourists gain the ability to go on VR tours and get to see their desired locations from the comfort of their homes. This can help assist them in assessing the potential of a place and choosing where the most quality destination would be. Through this method of travel, there are endless places to get a glimpse of. Most of the VR tours are created using 360 degree cameras, allowing the user to twist their head in an direction and look at whatever they please.


We've seen an increase in bleisure travel, which is the combination of business and leisure essentially combining a work trip with a vacation. During and after COVID-19, we saw a very sharp decline in office-style work environments. After staying at home for an extended period of time, people refused to go back to work and sit in a cubicle. Businesses began to incentivize and workers began to combine their work and personal lives, allowing them to work remotely and opening more time for their desired travels. According to Travel Edge Network, bleisure trips have increased by 25% compared to pre-COVID-19 years, and the duration of these trips has tripled to 10+ days.



Other trendings that we are seeing in travel and tourism are health and recreational traveling and ecological traveling. Many people have spoken out that throughout all of the lockdowns and lack of socialization, they began to suffer from mental illness and distress, mainly depression. Consumers will take such trip for mental wellness and recuperation, however, according to the Global Wellness Institute, this type of travel was diminished by 39% during the pandemic, but is now seeing the largest annual growth rate. It is important for us humans to socialize, as we are social beings.


Along with taking trips for personal health reasons, tourists are also being more sustainably aware when it comes to traveling. According to Booking.com's 2022 Sustainable Travel Report, 38% of travelers have become questioning on whether travel agencies are taking on necessary sustainable efforts. Here are a couple of more statistics presented in their report. 71% of consumer travelers desire to travel more sustainably in the next year, and this is up 10% from 2021. 53% of of the travelers stated they wish to make more sustainable travel decisions than they did in previous years. 40% confirm that they were able to identify sustainable places to stay on online travel sites over the previous year. Lastly, 38% are looking into sustainable efforts by the properties they are looking to stay at.


Overall, we are seeing an increase of conscious travelers and tourists. The COVID-19 pandemic has established new standards for tourism as they are investing more into their health and the environment. Most of these trends all connect back to new desires to feel secure on trips and to see the world as it is.


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Sources


Booking Global. “Sustainable Travel Report 2022.” Booking.com's 2021 Sustainable Travel Report Affirms Potential Watershed Moment for Industry and Consumers, Booking Global, 1 June 2021, https://globalnews.booking.com/bookingcoms-2021-sustainable-travel-report-affirms-potential-watershed-moment-for-industry-and-consumers/.


Kline, Daniel. Travel in the Post-Covid World: A Look Ahead to 2023. TheStreet, 29 Dec. 2022, https://www.thestreet.com/travel/travel-in-the-post-covid-world-a-look-ahead.


“The New Normal? Travel in the COVID-19 World - Article | Travel on | BBC Storyworks.” BBC News, BBC, https://www.bbc.com/storyworks/travel/travel-on/the-new-normal-travel-in-the-covid-19-world.


Sands, Roger. “Bleisure Travel Rapidly Increasing at Hotels and Resorts.” Forbes, Forbes Magazine, 8 Nov. 2022, https://www.forbes.com/sites/rogersands/2022/06/09/bleisure-travel-rapidly-increasing-at-hotels-and-resorts/?sh=52f10c4c902b.


Zubekhin, Sergey. Top Post-Covid Travel Trends and Startups to Look out for: GP Solutions. GP Solutions, 20 Mar. 2023, https://www.software.travel/blog/tips/post-covid-travel-trends/.

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