In the past years, the main dilemma was overtourism but when the pandemic hit the world in 2020, travel, as we knew it, came to a complete stop, and tourists across the world found themselves grounded.
Now that some borders are opening up again and lockdowns are easing up, people are beginning to travel again for leisure and business purposes. But how are the tourists feeling about it? And if ever they feel anxious about hitting the road and air again, how can you help travelers feel safe again? In this article, we will guide you through the common concerns of the tourists, how to take action, and increase revenue even in the middle of a pandemic.
What’s inside this blog?
- What Travelers Expect in the Time of a Pandemic
- Tips to Help Travelers Feel Confident Again
- Frequently Asked Questions About Restoring Traveler’s Confidence
What Travelers Expect in the Time of a Pandemic
Although tourism is reopening and slightly recovering, the traveling scene is quite far from getting back to normal.
In the time of a pandemic, safety is on top of mind for travelers to regain their confidence. But aside from safety, what else are they looking for? To find out about the travelers’ expectations, attitudes and behaviors, PwC surveyed more than 1,000 consumers, and here are their findings:
- Consumers seek trusted sources
- Consumers want control of their surroundings. 43% are likely to spend more to confirm physical distancing on their next flight. Families with children are even more safety-conscious, with 60% willing to pay more, as are 55% of younger consumers aged 18 to 40 years.
- Consumers want evidence of safety protocols. In PwC’s survey, almost 75% of respondents said employees wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) and third-party certified sanitation reviews offer them a sense of security.
Tips to Help Travelers Feel Confident Again
According to FCM travel, the survey they conducted showed that there is definitely an increasing sense of people needing to travel, but the major considerations people take into account for them to feel comfortable again while traveling are the duty of care, hygiene, and safety.
1. Implement strict health protocols
Safety is the top priority of travelers these days so until they feel more reassured that they can stay safely and hygienically at your hotel, chances are, they’d rather stay home or book another hotel. For you to gain their trust and help travelers feel confident again, follow the safety and health protocols. Let people know that you are taking extra measures to keep your guests and staff safe by documenting it on social media. You can post photos and videos of your staff following the guidelines, or share a guest review about their experience on your hotel’s health protocols. With guest reviews, you can strengthen your position as many travelers now rely on reviews. The more visible you are, the higher chances that you’ll attract customers.
2. Provide PPE kits to your staff and guests
Providing your staff and guests with personal protective equipment (PPE) eases their worries about the potential health risks while they are at your hotel. This could be as simple as giving a face mask, alcohol or sanitizer, and wipes. Simple as it sounds but it can go a long way in terms of helping people feel safe again while traveling as you are showing them how much you value the safety of your people and your customers.
3. Give access to up-to-date travel news sources
With the ever-changing travel advisories, equipping your guests with up-to-date information and resources that will support their trip is a must. By doing this, you show your guests how reliable you are and how much you value their time and safety.
4. Increase automation
High technology features that were originally intended as novelties or unique selling points are now becoming necessities during the time of a pandemic. Traditionally, many hotels emphasize person-to-person contact with their guests but now, it has changed. Hotel guests these days expect much higher standards of hygiene and prefer contactless services and transactions for their safety.
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Frequently Asked Questions About Restoring Traveler’s Confidence
Q: What causes traveler hesitancy?
A: Traveler hesitancy can be caused by the uncertainty of the condition and government regulation that cause people to have doubts about booking a trip or hotel stay as they might lose the opportunity to utilize what they have paid if any changes affected their travel journey.
Q: What to look for in the changing way travel is planned now?
- Shifts in tourism behavior resulted in domestic trips. With borders remaining closed for outbound travel, an increase in domestic luxury trips could occur as travelers reallocate their budgets.
- Price cuts could be used to stimulate demand but aren’t sustainable for the long term. Many travel companies offered discounts in the immediate aftermath of the crisis in order to compete for business and stimulate demand. This may result in price dilution, especially for hotels across the country, and thus may not be a sustainable strategy for the long term.
- International travel bubbles have to be explored with caution.
Q: Is the local market enough for Hotel revenue growth?
A: Local market or domestic market often have less spending power and are also very reactive to price changes hence will be difficult to support revenue growth of hotels, however, the current situation demands us to follow the changes as well, and the most possible market to tap on and the most visible one is Domestic market.