It is important to note that the keytrends explored in this report haveall been developed with an initial consideration of the short-and longer-term effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the travel sector.Indeed, it is hard to think of a sector more impacted by the pandemic than the global travel sector. As Richard Nicholls, Head of Research and Forecasting at Visit Britain states”The pandemic was the first time, in living memory,that we saw anything on this scale disrupting international travel.”
In particular, Foresight Factory research highlights the continuing influence of the pandemic on holiday and travel choices. For example:
Staycations and domestic tourism continue to see high demand:In2021,1in 4 GB consumers planned to have a holiday in their country more often inthe next 12 months than they did before the pandemic,and this peaks at over 1 in 3 Millennials.
International travel among GB consumers has not yet rebounded:18% of GB consumers in 2021 planned to holiday abroad more often in the next 12 months than they did pre-pandemic, but 31%plan to do so less often. This propensity towards less international travel holds true even among frequent pre-pandemic vacationers.
Those most afraid of COVID will not be going abroad:Unsurprisingly,among GB consumers who state that their top fear over the next five years is risk of infectious diseases(such as coronavirus),39% plan to take a holiday abroad less often in the next 12 months, 8 percentage points higher than the national average.
But Gen Z consumers are more open to international travel:Bucking the topline trend,1 in 3 Gen Z expect to travel abroad more often in the coming year than they did before the pandemic. Only 1 in 10 Boomers say the same.
However,despite such short-term impacts,a return to more normalisedtravel patterns is expected in a relatively short period oftime: albeit with new and accelerated forms of consumer demand emergingbecause of the lasting impact of the pandemic. In this report, we seek to acknowledge the influence of COVID-19 on travel expectations and behaviour, but look further out to 2030 to see how such consumer mindset changes will evolve over the short,medium and longer term.