Perhaps the first industry to face the heat of the unprecedented Pandemic is Travel and travel related business all over the world. Weather domestic or international, travel has been the last thing in peoples’ minds in these last few months, unless of course there’s emergency transfer. But, at the same time, this is also a fact that being an organic and biological need of the people, especially so, in a stressed and mechanical environment, travel would bounce back sooner than anticipated by many experts. But the question that we all need to address is that whether the nature and the perspective of travel would change and to what extent in furure.
Whether “new normal” would actually be there for long time or not, but, the ways of travel would definitely change:
“Sun loungers separated by plexiglass. Blood tests and sanitiser spray-downs before flights. These might sound extreme, but they are real measures some in the travel industry are looking at to keep holidaymakers feeling safe and comfortable in a post-lockdown world. ” – BBC Travel
Slow travel (less frequency but longer stay) : As per the various interactive sessions from the people from different parts of the country , most of them are in favour of travelling with much less frequency than what they used to do earlier while duration of the stay, at a particular place would be much more longer. With more and more organizations opting for work from home concept as regular norms, there would be a growing tendency among younger men and women to settle at beautiful destinations close to nature and away from the crowd while continuing their office work, even for months. Sensing the trend, travel companies have already started packaging their products as work-casion or work- from-home-stay etc.
Travel destinations: selecting next destination for vacation would undoubtedly take a much deeper thoughts and considerations than what it used to be in pre-covid era. The priorities would change considerably. Crowded shopping malls, a popular hill station terrace or a famous sea beach etc might less likely to make it in the priority list compared to less popular, off beat, ‘little-happening’ tourist destinations.
Travel purpose & perspective: The pandemic that started almost four months back and likely to continue for months to come, has taken a huge impact on the lifestyle and psychology of the people. Life is no more what it used to be. This drastic change in lifestyle would very obviously affect our behavior in socializing, eating outs, recreation as well as travel behavior. Travel for work or study, rural travel, meditational escape, trekking and camping etc are more likely to take the front seats.
Places to stay: A clean and hygienic environment far from the madding crowd, a room or a suit that not only offers privacy but also the adequate distance from the fellow travelers , organic foods made from the local farms are going to be more like a necessity than luxury. Home-stays are going to be the most sought after options among travelers of all classes and sections. A sense of home away from home would not only offer an economic option for a long stay but also offer the psychological support of consuming home made safe and hygienic food .
Mode of Travel: As the lockdown measures are eased phase wise and region wise, the travelers are most likely to opt for on-road travels compared to a train or flight in near future. Cost of travel: With world moving from a regular to a new extra cautious health security system the number of seats in most public transports are going to be restricted. Consequently, the cost of tickets is more likely to climb. Also, with lesser number of people traveling at a particular destination and with less frequency the hotel charges are also expected to be higher than normal.