Although the travel industry may not recover fully until a Covid-19 vaccine is out there and seen to be effective, many will now be researching and soon will be booking travel for the summer. This will only increase in pace as we get on top of infection rates – something I believe is on the horizon.
Why, you may ask, do I say that…? well let me take you through my thoughts.
- There is a greater level of understanding about travelling safely as people hear of others experiences of travelling in 2020 and 2021.
- Vaccines are producing good results and talk is turning from a working vaccine to the logistics of administering the vaccines in development.
- Companies are more aware of, and able to offer, more flexible cancellation terms, de-risking travel for the customer and giving the confidence to book.
- There is cautious optimism in the air – people are looking to 2021 as a new year. A reset button.
- There is a pent-up desire to travel and experience new things. People inherently desire the things they are told they can’t do!
- Social distancing and other measures will still be in place for a while yet, however hotels, airlines and activity suppliers have had time to try and test the best ways to deliver save travel. The industry is ready to go.
So, what does this mean for people travelling? And therefore, how do we need to market to them? In my view there are a few fundamental changes to customer behaviour and attitudes we need to consider, these include.
- Travellers are more risk averse – they will ask more questions of their suppliers and demand best refund or credit policies with lower deposits and flexible terms. Promoting this outwardly will immediately give you an advantage.
- There will be a trend for people to avoid big cities and head for wilderness, rural and less populated destinations. Assess what you are offing and tailor it accordingly.
- I believe people will research and book well in advance for their 2021 summer trips, to have something positive to look forward to. Travel businesses need to be proactive at the right time – there is a risk that if they wait, they could miss a great opportunity.
Regardless of the method of marketing, or channel you choose, now is the time for tourist offices and businesses to step up their campaigns. Now is the time to act if you want to come out of 2020 stronger.
If this interests you and you want to know more about how I help increase the awareness of tourism businesses around the world, give us a shout.