According to recent statistics, 53% of global travellers want to travel more sustainably in the future as a result of the pandemic. “We expect to see a more eco-conscious mindset in 2021, as people become more aware of their environmental impact and look to reduce their carbon footprint – consumers will expect the travel industry to offer more sustainable options. Many travellers will also visit alternative destinations they might not have previously considered in a bid to avoid traveling during peak season” explains Ryan Pearson, regional manager at Booking.com. Nicky Kelvin, director of content at The Points Guy agrees – “People are likely to be far more mindful about where they are travelling to and how this impacts the environment. There may be more thought given to travel for work too – virtual meetings have shown us how unnecessary it is to get on a plane to the other side of the world just for an hour’s meeting.”
As global travel restrictions are set to continue fluctuating according to lockdown rules, experts believe many customers will still be booking last-minute holidays, as and when travel corridors reopen. “There is huge potential for a rebound in travel for those wanting to seize the day after feeling trapped at home for months on end,” explains Nicky. “People may start to live for the now, and aim to realise their dreams with a last-minute trip. This could be a UK staycation booked the night before, or a luxury long-haul trip when a country is suddenly safe to travel to – many travellers will want to make up for lost time.”
Bucket List Holidays
Cancelled holidays during 2020 will likely see more UK travellers looking further afield next year, say the experts. Richard Sofer, commercial & business development director at TUI told us: “Our latest customer survey and booking patterns for next summer indicate the British public are looking forward to future holidays even more so, as they may have been unable to take one this year. People are searching for four or five-star hotels or luxury options in exotic destinations with private pools.” Bucket list holidays will be particularly popular with the older generation, suggests Simon White at TravelUp – “Those with a good amount of disposable income are researching bucket list holidays like never before, such as safaris in South Africa and once-in-a-lifetime train journeys around Australia.”
Heading on a road trip is one way to maintain social distancing rules without the need to travel on aeroplanes. “A big thing we've noticed for next year is that couples and families are looking to travel by themselves. As social distancing is the new norm, it's important for travellers to feel safe and comfortable on their next adventure – cue a road trip. Because of this, 2021 car rental services are also set to soar – being in the safety of a car will give many people the freedom to enjoy their next trip” says Simon.