5 trends that will change the way we travel after coronavirus

"Одна законченная результативная задача стоит полусотни полузаконченных задач." Малкольм Форбс ©
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What will travel look like post-coronavirus? Making the most of what’s on our doorstep, planning dream trips and greater flexibility than ever before are likely to become part of our future as we try to support an industry that’s been on its knees since the pandemic began in early 2020. Globetrender editor and founder Jenny Southan, along with forecasters Rose Dykins and Marisa Cannon, share five trends.

  • 5 trends that will change the way we travel after coronavirus

    STAYCATION SURGE

    Passport-free holidays are becoming the norm. In 2019, domestic tourism in England contributed £80 billion to the economy, but coronavirus is expected to knock £22 billion off that figure in 2020. But when restrictions loosened, there was a huge surge in demand for staycations. By spring, Operator Luxury Cotswold Rentals, for example, told Globetrender it had seen a 166 per cent year-on-year increase in traffic to its website, and a 138 per cent rise in the number of enquiries.

    The best UK staycation ideas according to the Condé Nast Traveller editors

  • 5 trends that will change the way we travel after coronavirus

    SUSTAINABILITY PARADOXES

    One of the few benefits of the pandemic has been the environmental bounceback, with global levels of nitrogen dioxide at record lows. About eight in 10 flights globally were grounded during spring, and previously clogged beaches and jam-packed streets were left eerily empty, giving wildlife greater freedom to roam.

    The silver lining is, of course, temporary. As governments tussle to revive ailing industries, environmental initiatives may well take a back seat.

    Major airlines have asked governments to delay upcoming policies that would limit air travel and reduce emissions, but campaigners have called for stringent conditions aligned with the Paris Climate Agreement on any airline bailout. However, the reality is that colossal revenue losses may leave airlines with little option but to discard offset plans.

    The question now is whether travel brands will scramble to return to normality as restrictions are lifted or be galvanised by this breather to maintain – and go further with – their environmental and social commitments. The unpolluted blue skies and birdsong are likely to have struck a chord with many, and it could be a promising moment for companies advocating a more considered approach to travel.

  • 5 trends that will change the way we travel after coronavirus

    WILDERNESS SEEKING

    In the era of social distancing, nature breaks are becoming more and more appealing. Travellers craving wide open spaces and inspiring views are longing for the great outdoors, and camping and glamping holidays are attracting new devotees looking to truly immerse themselves in the wilderness.

    Rewilding and conservation holidays – where travellers play an active part in helping an ecosystem return to its natural state – are also becoming more prevalent. Argentina’s Iberá Estuaries, the world’s second largest freshwater wetlands, have four campsites, the income from which helps finance the reintroduction of native species, including jaguar cubs. (However, commercial flights in and out of the country have been suspended.)

    Inventive cities are also trying to introduce more green space – Copenhagen, for instance, is building an archipelago of artificial islands accessible by swimming, kayak or boat that can be used for picnics and fishing.

    Read more: 10 stays in the UK that contribute to conservation projects

    10 stays in the UK that contribute to conservation projects

  • 5 trends that will change the way we travel after coronavirus

    ISOLATION HOLIDAYS

    Plenty of us will be dreaming of breaks in places devoid of crowds. Popular beaches, home-share rentals, large hotels and busy cities might be low on the wishlist while private villas, boats and boutique hotels, as well as quiet coastal, lakeside, mountain and rural locations will be scoring high. Not to mention helicopter transfers, hotel takeovers and island buy-outs for those who can afford them.

    Setting the trend for quarantine hideouts was Le Bijou hotel in Zürich, which started offering smart apartments with Covid-19 service, including food delivery, meals cooked by a personal chef (ordered remotely via iPad), around-the-clock health monitoring and even in-room coronavirus testing.

    In the Maldives, the ultimate in seclusion has to be taking over an entire island – Sun Siyam Resorts announced that for one million dollars visitors can book one of two islands (Iru Veli or Vilu Reef) for 15 days and up to 50 guests.

    At the lower end of the price scale, Norway’s innovative Birdbox cabins host just two people and can be placed in a pristine natural environment with minimal footprint.

    24 secret places where you can get away from the crowds

  • 5 trends that will change the way we travel after coronavirus

    DREAM-TRIP PLANNING

    Travellers who can afford to will be plotting epic, once-in-a-lifetime trips over the next few years, reflecting huge pent-up demand for travel after drawn-out restrictions.

    Living through a pandemic has sparked a re-evaluation of people’s priorities and attitudes. For many of those confined to their homes during lockdown, it has been a time to make plans.

    Travellers will probably stay abroad for longer periods and even take exotic sabbaticals, and modest mini-breaks will be swapped for blowout bonanzas.

    ‘People are using this time to dream up the kind of big bucket-list trips you never normally get around to planning,’ says Tom Marchant, co-founder of Black Tomato travel specialists. ‘We are seeing this reflected in recent bookings to Argentina for this winter’s solar eclipse; to Iceland to see the Northern lights and to places like Angama Mara in Kenya for the ultimate safari trip.’

    Condé Nast Traveller’s alternative bucket list

    Download the full, free Travel in the Age of COVID-19 trend report here.

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