Monday, February 14, 2022

International travel is surging

Massive 88% jump in travel abroad; longer, more remote trips expected 

Norway has lifted travel restrictions.
Nearly half of travelers (49%) have already taken an international trip, reflecting an 88% jump in travel abroad since the summer of 2021. Domestically, 85% of respondents have already traveled, signaling an 18% increase since the summer of 2021, according to the Winter 2022
Global RescueTravel Safety and Sentiment survey of the world’s most experienced travelers. 

More people are returning to travel domestically and abroad, according to the survey. Nine out of 10 travelers are “much less or less” concerned about travel since the pandemic, revealing a 22% increase in travel confidence since the summer of 2021. 

Costa Rica is a favorite international destination.

“All signals are pointing to the beginning of the end of international travel restrictions due to the pandemic. Countries like New Zealand, Denmark, Norway, Sweden and others are opening their borders as severe COVID-19 illnesses and hospitalizations decline, vaccinations increase and testing is more convenient. 

Domestic travel continues to increase but the big news is that travel abroad is surging,” said Dan Richards, CEO of Global Rescue, the leading provider of medical, security, evacuation and travel risk management services.  

Destination preferences continue to lean toward out-of-the-way places in the open air with fewer people. More than three-quarters of respondents (76%) are planning more outdoor, remote travel – a 40% increase compared to traveler responses nearly a year ago. For the first time since the pandemic started, an overwhelming majority of travelers (82%) indicated they are planning more trips lasting five or more days.  

Cycling in Ireland is a way to avoid crowds.

“When people feel safe, they travel and we are seeing tremendous, positive change in the traveler confidence about their well-being,” Richards said. According to the survey, nearly half of respondents (47%) confirm they feel safest when vaccinated or recovered from COVID followed by having medical evacuation protection (20%) and visiting uncrowded destinations or outdoor activity (17%.) 

Despite the upturn in travel attitudes and behavior, more than half of travelers (52%) admit that COVID-19 infection, its variants or quarantine is still their number one travel fear, followed by trip cancellation (17%) and having an accident or sustaining an injury (16%).  

Some think air travel 
restrictions are too strict.

Travelers are divided when it comes to their opinion of how government officials are handling travel choices during the pandemic. More than a third of respondents (38%) believe current COVID-19 restrictions are “impossibly strict” or “unnecessarily strict,” while slightly more (44%) say the restrictions are “just right.” Less than a fifth (17%) say the restrictions are “too lenient.” 

This article is slightly edited from a press release by Global Rescue, courtesy of Bill McIntyre,   

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