Vaccines are boosting consumer confidence in travel. Airlines, airports, travel agencies and cruise lines are all reporting increased traffic and bookings.
New research from Allianz details this surge and how vaccines are driving it and how other health and safety measures continue to increase confidence as well.
A majority of the 3,500 customers that Allianz surveyed (67 percent) said that they believe receiving a COVID-19 vaccine will make them feel safe enough to travel again. Customers over the age of 65 placed more importance on receiving the vaccine (78 percent) versus customers in younger age ranges.
When it comes to feeling safe traveling, consumers felt safer if they themselves were vaccinated versus ensuring that all those around them were vaccinated, such as airline crew or other travelers. Sixty-seven percent said receiving the vaccine was more impactful while 47 percent said it was more impactful for airline crews or other travelers receiving the vaccine.
Allianz asked travelers what would make them feel safe enough to travel again. Apart from the 67 percent that said COVID-19 vaccines, 66 percent said wearing masks on planes, in airports, etcetera. Fifty-nine percent said blocked seats/limited capacity on planes and trains, and 58 percent said advanced sanitizing efforts at airports and hotels. Forty-seven percent said others receiving a COVID-19 vaccine would make them feel safe to travel, and 44 percent of people said that declining cases in the destination they are visiting would be a major factor. Forty-one percent said that requiring proof of a negative COVID-19 test would make them feel safe.
“It is a huge accomplishment to have three highly-effective COVID-19 vaccines in distribution throughout the U.S.,” said Daniel Durazo, director of marketing and communications at Allianz Partners USA. “Our survey finds that increased traveler confidence is a direct result of improved vaccine availability, and we are pleased to see how vaccines will impact the recovery of the travel industry and travelers’ vacation plans in 2021 and beyond.”
The Allianz survey results show just how passionate its customers are about traveling. When asked when travelers anticipate traveling next, the vast majority are planning to within the next year.
Already, 13 percent of respondents said they were traveling now. Nine percent will travel within less than a month, and 19 percent will travel within one to three months. Eighteen percent plan to travel within four to six months, and 15 percent said they would vacation in seven to 12 months. Five percent said that they would wait more than 12 months while 21 percent said that they don’t know when they will travel again.
Plans for vacations are mostly local at the moment. Most customers are still planning to travel within the Continental U.S. (56 percent) for their next trip. That is followed by Mexico, the Caribbean or Hawaii (21 percent) and Europe (15 percent).
Allianz customers are also ready to fly again. In a continued positive sign for the airline industry, which has faced a difficult year of decreased demand, Allianz discovered that most customers (70 percent) plan to fly their next destination, compared to driving (20 percent).