Anticipate extra site visitors on the street, at airports
The vacation travel season is usually the busiest time of the year.
This year, the COVID-19 pandemic combined with national and international travel restrictions has made things complicated. What will this 2020 travel season look like?
Here are some predictions from top travel experts:
Travel expert Amanda Norcross expects travel costs to rise this holiday season, even though fewer people are traveling overall. “Many will be traveling to see family and friends for the first time since the quarantine began and are likely to get lower airfares as airlines struggling with cash compete for the best deals,” says Norcross.
Hopper’s new Holiday Travel Confidence Report also suggests that an increase in travel is likely. According to a survey, 39% say they want to travel this year on vacation. However, 21% said they did not plan to travel, even though they would in a typical year. About 50% plan to fly over Thanksgiving and 75% say they will do so for the December break.
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When it comes to road travel, the American Automobile Association (AAA) is the go-to place for data. The association typically publishes its travel forecasts for the Thanksgiving and year-end holidays in November and December, respectively. A spokesperson for AAA says given the impact of COVID, it’s difficult to make estimates at this point of what travel will be like on vacation this year.
According to the AAA, summer travel forecast may be the best guide right now. This summer, Americans were expected to make more than 700 million trips from July through September, a 15% decrease from last year.
Motorhomes & Camping
RVShare.com, a recreational vehicle rental website, expects bookings to spike in November and December as more travelers may choose the road. While the weather will be much colder in some parts of the country, the boom in RVs and camping is likely to continue.
“More than half of travelers (in a recent survey) said they would consider renting an RV to visit family and staying in a family member’s driveway or at a nearby campsite to to achieve social distance, “says Maddi Bourgerie, spokeswoman for RVShare.
Cruise lines unclear
When it comes to cruising this vacation no one really knows. As of now, the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s No-Sail regulation will apply through November 1, and there is no telling whether the CDC will extend it beyond that date.
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Money back cancellations
InsureMyTrip data shows that travel insurance continues to be in demand even though total travel is not available during the vacation. According to a recent customer survey, around 90% of customers are very interested in reporting in case they want to cancel a trip due to Covid-19 fears.
“We encourage leisure travelers to consider travel insurance with the cancellation upgrade for whatever reason. That way, policyholders can withdraw from a trip and get money back – not a voucher – as long as they meet the requirements, ”said Cheryl Golden, director of eure Commerce at InsureMyTrip.
Travelers can find plans at CancelMyTrip.com or InsureMyTrip.com.
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Hotel travel offers vary
When it comes to travel prices on this vacation, experts predict that there will be bargains with lower average hotel prices than in previous years.
“US hotel prices averaged $ 117 a night for Thanksgiving and averaged $ 150 a night for Christmas,” said Liana Corwin, consumer travel expert for travel booking app Hopper.
Flexible travel dates
Hotels and rental companies expect less pressure on the traditional main travel weeks.
“With the ability to work and train remotely, families will enjoy longer travel over the holidays and travel on less popular days and times to avoid crowded streets and planes,” said James Henderson, CEO of Exclusive Resorts Exclusive Resorts.
Henderson also anticipates strong demand for safe sanctuaries through standalone vacation residences with COVID-era amenities like dedicated concierge services, private pools, plenty of outdoor space, and fully equipped kitchens.
Health and Safety Precautions
Experts predict more communication from travel providers and booking sites regarding health logs this vacation to protect themselves from COVID.
For example, Booking.com just released a new feature on its property listings called “Health and Safety Measures”. According to CMO Arjan Dijk, this feature indicates actions the property is taking in areas such as hygiene, distancing, and food safety. “We therefore encourage travelers to read through these security measures to help them choose a property that will give them security.
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The US hotel industry is prepared for just about any scenario on this vacation. There is strong potential for high demand for so-called “flex spaces”, areas that can transition from a bedroom to a work area, with the option of longer stays.
“Here in Miami, we expect multi-family travelers to extend their vacation stays beyond the average week to several weeks or even months. Says Rick Ueno, general manager of W South Beach.
Win early risers
While early bird advice seems redundant, says Mark Jackson, tour guide at Brad’s Deals, once you know your travel dates about the vacation – book your flights. While flights are historically lower, they could get higher as we get closer to the season.
“With fewer flights than normal this year due to service cuts, there won’t be many offers during the holidays. And with fewer flights, you have less choice of when to fly. The best way to guarantee your preferred travel times is to book early, ”says Jackson.
Boo! Book your vacation trips by Halloween or you may be haunted by higher fares, warns the website