Covid-19 is a nightmare for the year 2020. Coronavirus spread and became a permanent part of our lives. First of all the virus crippled Asia and then set its claws deeply in Europe.
The death toll and pace of virus transmission made things worse. The world came at a complete standstill. The initial cases were reported in December 2019. However, nobody knows the time Covid-19 will consume from our lives.
Tourism Industry affected
In the initial months of 2020 governments implemented smart lock-down and other strategies to combat the Coronavirus. This was the blow to the travel industry.
The losses of the first quarter of 2020 were huge. $24 billion loss of the US tourism industry is forecasted. Covid-19 impacted all industries economically. One by one small business closed down. The effects of Coronavirus trickled down to all classes. Nonetheless, new ways to operate and battle the virus are considered.
Though, there is news of slow economic and business activity. We also see organizations and people starting to resume their work. Europe is opening for tourism, with new precautions. Meanwhile, Newzealand and Australia have shown interest in promoting travel and tourism. France as the most visited country in the world aims to welcome tourists in summer 2020. Caribbean countries have also started welcoming tourists.
How travel industry collapsed?
There are business travelers as well as leisure tourists. The Covid-19 effect was uniform for all. Firstly the countries stopped flights from infected countries. Moving on, domestic and international flights were also frozen.
Trade festivals, meetings, and events all were canceled or postponed due to Covid-19. A closer look at events will reflect the damage to the travel industry.
- Flight bookings declined.
- Hotel and rental property business went down with low tourism.
- A downward trend in supplies and food business for hotels became apparent.
- The general profit margins shrank.
- The constant low flight attendance led to furloughing employees.
- Air, land and sea travel was stopped to stop transmission of Coronavirus.
- Many bookings were canceled and the amount was returned.
Travel in the times of Coronavirus
However, now is the time to move forward. Countries have started to resume their economic activity. starting from China to Europe we have seen a change. flights have resumed, people are flying and planning trips.
Everyone now fears travel. Nonetheless, bookings are pouring in. The hotels are receiving calls inquiring about their operations. Many neighboring countries have already started the exchange of tourists.
An interesting finding is that now people are opting for staycations as well. The lack of fun and entertainment has made people more flexible in their demands. Moreover, domestic travel has shown better results worldwide.
Safety for all
So far, everyone is still an easy target of the virus, until a vaccine is made. Therefore, prevention is better than cure for all. The basic preventive measures are common for all. But, traveling in the pandemic requires extra attention.
The majority of the people have concluded that their travel plans can wait. Another percentage of people are open to domestic travel plans and road trips. However, business and work travelers are the people with the least choice in this matter.
The main concern for all people is their health and safety. the travelers and their families back home all have one unanswered question. the lack of a vaccine or permanent medicine has increased the stress. However, if all precautions are followed chances of contracting Covid-19 ar minimized.
The most basic and uniform guidelines remain the same. right from stepping out for grocery till sitting on a plane!
- Everyone must wear a mask.
- Maintain a distance of at least six feet.
- Do not touch your face.
- Wear gloves if touching surfaces cannot be avoided.
- Everyone must carry sanitizers.
Above mentioned precautions are valid for all countries and all situations. While traveling for business one has to be extra cautious in their movements.
Work traveling means less interest in outdoors and locations. Therefore, one can easily stay at a hotel/ booked space without much interaction with others.
Road or Air travel
Airlines have slowly started operations in many parts of the world. Presently, the fares are low the planes less populated. However, there is the uncertainty of fellow passenger’s health. In the case of long distances, sleep and hotel issues may deem important. This can lead to the decision of choosing air travel.
For road travel personal cars can be used. A personal car used indicates that the vehicle is safest for driving. If there will be more passengers, then one must wear masks at all times. Longer distances indicate that cars will be stopped in many places. This can expose people. The point of social distancing does get compromised in road travel. Also, sleep deprivation and stress factors keep increasing.
Hotel or Airbnb
In both cases, of hotel or Airbnb one has not seen the cleaning process. So a little thought in decision making gives a higher probability of safety.
In the case of hotels, try to get a room that has been vacant for the longest. This request stems from the longevity of viruses on surfaces. Also, one can carry a stash of alcohol wipes and sanitizers to personally clean surfaces. After checking in one can personally clean doorknobs, electric switches as a safety protocol.
Airbnb has been advertising their properties with cleaning and sanitation implemented. Yet, for one’s safety doing a deep clean on your own is a favorable step. So be wise, when you pack and carry sanitizers and disinfectants for your cleaning spree.
The trickiest part is going out with family. The majority of summer travelers have canceled their plans. 80% of those are the ones who were traveling with kids and family, But, sadly the lockdown situation made everyone irritable. There is a sad environment that needs to end.
The lack of medicine and vaccine means safety is of immense importance. Still, one has options for beaches and parks. If your area beaches have opened up. Then one can go while staying closer. Also, taking your own water and food supplies is important.
Be careful about using public toilets and cafes. This can only be implemented when the statistic reveals the decline of Covid-19 in your area.
Swimming at the beach is fine as virus transmission is not possible in the water. A few beaches have introduced apps to book slots at the beach. This measure is good for social distancing.
Amusement parks are still closed. Museums, theatres are also partially open. The use of touchless features and social distancing can help many ventures.
To travel or not is a subjective topic. Some are desperate for stepping out. While others are waiting for things to end, However, economic gear has to move. This can happen with movement. The employees and workers have to step out.
The only solution now is to stay cautious. If traveling is good for mental health then choose wisely. Pick routes that are easy. Select mode of travel with lesser risk.
Make sanitizers your best friend. Practice good hygiene and stay stress-free. If traveling feeds your soul then maybe venture out now as things are getting better.