If you need evidence of America’s pent-up wanderlust, just look at Memorial Day weekend: More than 7 million people were screened at U.S. airports, the highest number since the pandemic began. And road travel expected a 60 percent jump compared to the holiday weekend last year.
Travel experts say it lines up with an expected surge in “revenge travel,” Americans who are eager to shed the pandemic — with all its disappointment and canceled plans — and finally get out of the house.
But the travel industry is not what it was before COVID-19 took over the world. Some changes, such as masking and decreased capacity on cruise ships, are temporary. Other adaptations, like expanded cleaning and relaxed cancellation and rebooking policies, are likely here to stay.
Plus, a global pandemic has made would-be tourists view travel differently. Experts say this will be the age of conscious travel. Tourists will be more discerning about trips, more appreciative of nature and local communities, more careful with their money.
Thanks to flexible workspaces, some might even embark on long-term “workations,” combining work with vacations and staying for longer periods of time in a new place.
Friday morning, host Kerri Miller discussed what post-pandemic travel might look like with two experts who believe travel won’t just snap back to the way it was before COVID-19. Post-pandemic travel will be something new.
Kyle Potter is executive editor of Thrifty Traveler.
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