We Asked Over 100 Travelers what They Think About Post-Quarantine Travel & Here Are the Results
Over the last few years, travel has seen incredible levels of growth. Over 68 million flights were taken in 2019 and this year the industry was bracing for a projection of a record breaking 4.72 billion travelers. However, as we all know, things aren’t exactly going as planned due to the COVID outbreak. So we asked travelers, who take to the skies for both business and leisure, how they are thinking about travel post-quarantine. At this time, it’s important to put the needs, health and safety of these passengers first, and they shared insights with us that can help the travel industry do just that. We have broken our insights down to three sections: Overall Travel, Leisure Travel, and Corporate Travel.
While travel may be at a stand still right now, most participants of the survey (more than 87%) indicated that they are still planning and hoping to travel in the next 6–12 months, which is good news for the industry. We deep dive into how they are thinking about future leisure and corporate travel trips below.
More than 87% of leisure travelers are still planning to travel more than once over the next 6–12 months. However 80% said that they will not be traveling to concerts, music festivals or other large gatherings. And while most indicated that the factors that they prioritize when comparing flights are typically price, timing and vacation days, we saw an overwhelming number of people respond that the status of COVID and the current guidelines and restrictions will be a big factor in their decision to travel.
When asked how they will make decisions to limit their risk of COVID exposure while traveling, many indicated that they will be looking to the WHO, CDC as well as government recommendations and policies to guide them. They will also be doing research on the number of cases at their destination and will seek out any available data from media outlets, online resources and health experts to assess the risk of COVID exposure while traveling.
In our survey results, most responders noted that they are most concerned with exposure to COVID while at their destination, on their flight and at the airport. When asked if they will be taking any preventative measures to limit their exposure, the 91% who said yes, expanded and specified that they will be using masks, wipes and sanitizer to keep themselves safe on flights, one noting that they will prioritize taking direct flights.
When asked about what policies and procedures they would like to see in place, many wrote that they would like to see masks given out at airports or on flights. Many also wrote that they would like to see airlines implement social distancing measures, better cleaning and hygiene policies, temperature testing & COVID testing being done prior to boarding as well as more flexible cancellation policies.
More than 90% of business travelers said that they believe that their business travel plans will decrease over the next 6–12 months. When asked to estimate how much corporate travel will decrease, the results were quite spread out.
While the survey responses showed that corporate travelers typically consider comfort, convenience and rewards programs when booking their business trips, when asked about what factors will drive their decision to travel over the next 6–12 months, respondents indicated that COVID, health and safety, approval from their company as well as the necessity/return of investment of the business trip will be considered.
When asked about how they typically manage risk while traveling, interestingly most wrote that they do not use any tools such as travel apps to do so and the ones that do, use the news or airline-specific apps. Also, 68% noted that they do not have an agent or corporate travel manager that they can contact if they face any issues while traveling.
100% of corporate travelers said that COVID will be a factor in their decision to travel over the next 6–12 months. They are most concerned about COVID exposure on their flight, at the airport and destination and will be looking to the CDC, News/Media and their company’s travel policy when assessing their travel plans.
How Do We Move Forward?
It is clear that travel as we know it is going to change. While the details of these changes are still being decided, there are precautions that individual travelers can take to protect themselves and prepare for what is next. Staying updated on the most recent facts about COVID and finding the right tools to provide you with the information you need to safely travel is paramount. Before you fly, you should think about what precautions airlines are taking to ensure your journey is as safe as possible.
As you begin to book your next trips, whether they be for leisure or business, make sure to check out Pilota’s COVID-19 Dashboard for realtime information about the status of flights at several major airports and airlines.
Also be sure to follow us on our social media channels (@flypilota) for updates on the launch of our new chrome extension, FlySafe. With the concerns of travelers everywhere in mind, we’ve created a tool that will help you sort through flights on major search engines based on the safety measures being implemented, keeping you safe and providing you with peace of mind.