While we’re beginning to see movement again in world, we have to be honest with ourselves: there will be no going back to normal when it comes to travel, at least for some time – and you don’t have the time or energy to navigate what that looks like. That’s why we’re here: the team at Epperly is constantly evaluating the changing government and safety dynamics to the evolving landscape of the travel industry so that you don’t have to.
As we begin to understand what this new travel industry looks like, and how temporary or long-lasting these things might be, we believe an educated traveler is a happy traveler, and there are three things you as a savvy traveler have to consider moving forward: cost and convenience and compression.
Staying safe while traveling is not going to cost you less. The implementation of new health and safety codes will be pricey. Think about it: if planes are blocking their middle seats, they’re effectively removing a third of their capacity. If hotels are requiring additional housekeeping measures, that means they’re hiring more staff. I believe you’ll see, at best, a temporary reduction in airfare prices and specials from hotels – promotions like stay 4/pay 3, which allows a hotel to offer you a discounted rate while still protecting the integrity of their average nightly rate which, once we’re on the other side of this they’ll be sticking to, not slashing through.
From a convenience standpoint, unfortunately our preferences as travelers is going to be significantly impacting. Connections will be the new normal as airlines get back off the ground, focusing on the most popular routing. Unless you are interested in flying private, which we can help with, the next few years will see normalcy only in flying from large hub to large hub, with additional logistics required to get to the most off-the-beaten path destinations.
And finally, compression. 2021 will be our year, right? Everyone seems to think so – and, if you agree, it’s wise to start planning your 2021 trips sooner rather than later. Many of the postponed 2020 trips moved to next year, and continue doing so. This means that 2021 will experience the compression of nearly two years in one, making it harder to book last minute. My recommendation? Plan your 2021 trips NOW. This also allows you to take advantage of more flexible terms and conditions that might not be around next year.
For your 2020 trips, we can take this step by step as the world opens up – you know you’ve got us to come to for your last minute travel needs. Driving distance getaways are opening back up and our partner properties are taking excellent safety measures to ensure you’ll be comfortable. We’ll talk more about those measures – and all you need to know as a traveler – very soon. In the meantime, trust that we’re keeping an eye out on each moving piece of this puzzle so that you don’t have to.
Along those lines, the value a solid travel advisor brings to the table is critical now more than ever. We already took off the strain of travel planning for our clients before COVID, but navigating the every changing government policies, airline routing and hotel reopening is a whole new part of our gig that we’re doing for you. You’ve got enough on your plate adjusting back to whatever normal daily life looks like that you don’t need to worry about figuring this out on your own. Epperly Travel is happy to be that partner to you, so please fill out a request a trip form on our website or shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org when you’re ready to plan your next getaway!