Are people planning their next trip, or their revenge on COVID-19? This is the question experts around the world are attempting to get to the bottom of as the concept of revenge travel becomes more attainable.
The phrase refers to the consumers’ mindset after COVID when all are more eager to travel after spending the best part of two years in lockdowns or national restrictions. While concerns of contracting COVID-19 are still high and access to travel still limited, 2022 is certainly expected to be the ultimate comeback year for extravagant travels.
This goes hand-in-hand with what The Psychiatric Times refers to as ‘COVID-19 burnout’, which has affected the majority of the world’s population. In the pandemic’s case, and as opposed to the 2008 recession, employees remained highly engaged on the job in an attempt to make the work-from-home situation slightly more motivating. Many also felt grateful to still have their livelihoods intact when businesses around the globe closed down for good and many lost their jobs.
2022 is certainly expected to be the ultimate comeback year for extravagant travels.
While it is not news that this pandemic brought about economic hardship for many, a GlobalData poll from last May showed how around 20% of respondents have saved more money for a trip than they would have before COVID-19. Travel experts believe this will pave the way for a surge in bookings for more extravagant trips. In turn, holidaymakers are likely to spend more money than usual during their trips. A recent study by AirDNA, which specialises in short-term holiday rentals, found that bookings for Airbnb and VRBO in smaller cities and rural areas are 62% higher than summer of 2019.
With mainland Europe gradually reopening to tourists many US citizens, in particular, fled to Italy as their first post-COVID getaway. Iceland, Greece and Spain were also popular destinations with American tourists.
Experts in the field insist that while the pandemic has certainly changed how we travel from one country to another, it is still clear that the desire to discover will endure. Travel restrictions seem to have upped the sector’s value in consumers’ minds, clouding them with a dire need to reach for the horizon.
Eric Jones, co-founder of The Vacationer, explained revenge travel to the Huffington Post as retribution against COVID-19 and how it is losing its power to control our lives, including cancelling travel plans”.
As we now look to book more elaborate holidays we are also considering an array of extra supplies we might have overlooked in ‘the time before, such as hand sanitisers, wipes, and face masks. Fyall believes people should travel as long as they feel comfortable doing so, yet safety should be the utmost priority throughout.
If you plan on going abroad in 2022, the best time to book is NOW.
In a separate interview with the Huffington Post Fyall noted how most of us might be too keen to return to normality, we are putting ourselves in danger of ‘rushing back too quickly to what was considered normal tourist behaviour”, an argument backed by the spike in Coronavirus cases around the globe during the last holiday season.
Research and the right insurance are our new best friends on our travels, particularly entry requirements of different countries and what visitors are allowed to do once they arrive.
On the other hand, the World Tourism Organization recently also noted that around 14% of experts believe tourism will return to pre-pandemic levels by the new year, while the vast majority (49%) believe it will only return to normality by 2024.
If, however, you plan on going abroad in 2022, the best time to book is NOW. Experts on popular travel app Tripscout suggest choosing more flexible options for your travels and also booking your flight tickets and accommodation at once to make the most of the current benefits. As the world opens up and re-stabilises itself, hotels and accommodations might up their prices to make up for lost revenue, and rest assured travellers will flock to their respective airports, vacation spots will once again be limited.
In other words, check those savings and bring out that travel bucket list again. We’re about to avenge ourselves.