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Travelers Look Ahead with Optimism

New survey finds half of travelers ready to take a trip in the next 12 months, especially with vaccines widely available

Half of travelers say they feel optimistic about taking a trip in the next 12 months, according a new survey.The research by Expedia Group’s Media Solutions organization found the majority of travelers (57 percent) said they would be comfortable traveling if a vaccine is widely available.

This is promising news given that this survey of 11,000 travelers was done in October, prior to the rollout of several vaccines worldwide. Participants were from 11 countries; Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Mexico, the UK, and the US.

Other findings from the survey include:

• Globally, Generation Z and millennial travelers are one and a half times more likely than other generations to take a leisure trip in January to March 2021.

• Brazilian, Chinese, and Mexican travelers are also more likely to travel between January and March 2021.

• However most respondents say they are more likely to take trips between April and September 2021.

• Seven in 10 travelers will look for flexibility, such as travel insurance and trip protection, full cancellations and refunds on transportation and accommodations.

While optimism about the resumption of travel varies by country and generation, the survey found widespread emphasis among travelers on the importance of hygiene protocols, with 60 percent of air travelers saying they would be most comfortable if social distancing measures are in place, and half of respondents citing continuing mask policies as an important factor in their future travel plans.

Additional considerations include contactless room service and takeout (24 percent) and contactless check in options (23 percent).

Globally almost half of respondents (45 percent) also said they expect travel providers to offer easy refunds or cancellation policies.

“We know the pent-up demand for travel will grow,” said Monya Mandich, vice president of global marketing, Expedia Group Media Solutions. “COVID-19 has driven a seismic shift in traveler preferences and influences, and understanding these changes is critical to recovery efforts.”