Make it better, not just safer: The opportunity to reinvent travel

Make it better, not just safer: The opportunity to reinvent travel

The desire to build memories, to connect with people, and to see new places drove 1.4 billion of us to travel internationally in 2019. Creating safer travel experiences is now paramount to protect this privilege.

Now is clearly a moment of crisis for the travel industry. Available seat miles on US airlines were down 71 percent in April 2020 from the previous year. Globally, hotels are at 29 percent occupancy, compared with 72 percent over the same period in 2019. However, we are seeing green shoots of demand in areas that are opening up, highlighting an enduring desire to travel; our April survey of Chinese leisure travellers shows that many people are already planning their next trip.

A recent article from McKinsey discuss how travel companies need to excite and attract customers as well as reassure them. They should remember that the pain points and trends that existed before the crisis—such as the shift toward a more digital and personalized journey, and an increased emphasis on wellness and sustainability—have not gone away. Airports, for example, are going to have to rethink customer experience in the coming years, but many already understood the importance of improved service and contactless operations.

The travel industry is in crisis, with airline seat miles and hotel occupancy at all-time lows. However, there are some signs of growing demand. But the future of the travel industry will depend on more than just travellers’ pent-up demand. For some, the romance that travel used to inspire was already wearing thin even before the crisis. This Mckinsey article reports on travellers recent experiences, particularly the added stress—whether due to limited entry points, multiple new checkpoints, or fellow travellers’ inconsistent compliance with published safety measures.Read the full article below.

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