Travel Trends

Dear TAs,

As travel agents, it is very interesting to see what the traveling public is currently thinking and feeling.  The International Air Transport Association (IATA) recently conducted a survey, and below are some of the results. 

88% believe that when opening borders, the right balance must be struck between managing COVID-19 risks and getting the economy going again

85% believe that governments should set COVID-19 targets (such as testing capacity or vaccine distribution) to re-open borders

84% believe that COVID-19 will not disappear, and we need to manage its risks while living and traveling normally

68% agreed that their quality of life has suffered with travel restrictions

49% believe that air travel restrictions have gone too far

In summary, there is public support for travel restrictions, and it is becoming clear that people are feeling more comfortable with managing the risks of COVID-19. People dislike the loss of freedom to travel – and the health, social and economic consequences that come from these limitations. Many feel stress and have missed important moments as a result of the restrictions. Restrictions have prevented others from doing business normally.

More survey results:

 57% expect to be traveling within two months of the pandemic being contained (improved from 49% in September 2020)

72% want to travel to see family and friends as soon as possible (improved from 63% in September 2020)

81% believe that they will be more likely to travel once they are vaccinated

84% said they will not travel if there is a chance of quarantine at destination (largely unchanged from 83% in September 2020)

56% believe that they will postpone travel until the economy stabilizes (improved from 65% in September 2020)

These results indicate that people are becoming more confident to travel, but do not want to do so if they have to quarantine.  Testing and vaccination improvements should remove that barrier. Most potential travelers believe that there should be a standard vaccine and testing certification process, such as the IATA Travel Pass app, as long as they retain control of their personal data.

The return to travel is coming, because travelers are beginning to feel safer and more confident.


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