With restrictions on travel lifting, airlines operating from July and holiday destinations opening we are seeing positive moves in consumer sentiment in terms of travel.
Deloitte’s state of the consumer tracker for Ireland has moved significantly in the last month (albeit from a low base).
There are still uncertainties in terms of travel and tourism and the sector was hit harder than most, but people have an appetite for a holiday and the burning question is “should I stay or should I go?”
- Staycations – Health and safety concerns will see consumers looking closer to home for holidays and the Irish travel industry is keen to deliver, especially with the reduction in foreign visitors. IHF research has shown that 90% of hotels will be open by mid July. For the peak month of August members project an average occupancy of 38% versus 90% so the experience will be very different.
- Rediscovering Ireland – While we stay closer to home, we have the opportunity to rediscover our country from our cities, countryside and the amazing biodiversity on our own doorstep.
- Supporting local – This pandemic has gifted us a return to supporting local, from food retail to restaurants and artisan producers. We can see this transfer to the hospitality sector with consumers supporting local tourism.
With restrictions still in place and a 14 day isolation period if you travel abroad this is a little trickier, but things are moving fast and could change quicker than we might think.
- Escapism – Let’s face it, we see travel as a priority and a ‘normal’ part of our lives. We associate summer holidays with relaxation and rewarding oneself while escaping from the daily grind.
- Europe is reopening – Countries are scrambling to get holiday destinations open and COVID-19 compliant for the remainder of the season. Capacity on beaches could be reduced by up to 90% but innovation will help find solutions. One Spanish resort is reportedly going to take reservations for a spot on the sand, via an app.
- Ready to fly – Aer Lingus and Ryanair have announced resumption of flights from July, with Ryanair announcing a sale on 250,000 seats for their July sale. Ryanair expects bookings for the summer months to be at 50% of usual occupancy so they’re more optimistic than the Deloitte survey suggests.
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Source: Deloitte State of the Consumer Tracker, Irish Hotel Federation, Ryanair