5 ways Covid-19 changed the way we travel
With international borders set to potentially remain closed until 2022, tourism is certainly looking a bit different this year. The trans-Tasman travel bubble with New Zealand, plus more potential bubbles under discussion, mean some overseas travel is possible. However, it does look like many of us will be making plans to holiday here in Australia this year.
The lockdowns are mostly behind us, and vaccine rollouts, improved track and trace systems, and the quarantine program for international arrivals have kept our case numbers low. Restrictions have largely eased for some time now, affording Australians a degree of normality. And with no shortage of wonderful holiday destinations to choose from in our own backyard, domestic travel is on the up. With flexible booking arrangements from many airlines and hotels, confidence to book that trip is increasing. Nevertheless, there is no doubt that the COVID19 pandemic has impacted how we think about and plan travel.
So as we think about holidaying at home in Australia this year, what are some of the ways that travel has changed?
Our reasons for travelling have changed
People are travelling more for pleasure than business. With increased remote working and zoom meetings, the days of hopping on a plane for a meeting are gone, possibly forever. Instead, there is a greater desire to catch up with friends and family. We are booking more meaningful trips that value the whole experience of travel. Perhaps staying in less touristy places and looking for something more personalised and authentic.
We want to get more out of our trips
Boutique accommodation concepts such as LOCAY provide an altogether more holistic approach to travel. Often located in less touristy neighbourhoods, yet still conveniently central, LOCAY’s properties offer uniquely curated designs, exceptional comfort and a high level of friendly service you can rely on. Recognising the value of the whole accommodation extends beyond the four walls of a hotel room, their properties have partnerships with local businesses, providing guests with exclusive discounts and offers to get out and explore the area.
We have become more conscious travellers
Never before has we seen so clearly the impact that travel can have not just on wellbeing but also on the economy. Tourism operators and local businesses have faced the double whammy of the complete halt of international visitors combined with domestic border closures and local lockdowns. Our trips can support domestic tourism operators, as well local cafes, restaurants and shops. A more mindful way of looking at travel means we see the many ways our trips can bring value to not just ourselves but also to others.
Our priorities have changed when we book accommodation
Our experience of uncertainty has made us more conscious of the need for flexibility when booking accommodation. Clear policies around cancelling or changing a booking provide reassurance when planning a trip. Booking direct can make it easier to negotiate, should you have to change your plans unexpectedly due to unforeseen circumstances. LOCAY offers flexible rates which can be changed or cancelled up until 2pm on the day of arrival. They are also able to change or offer guest credit for some non-refundable rates, if changes are requested before check-in. However, date changes are subject to availability and rate differences may apply.
We are concerned about Covid Safety
We have greater concerns about our health and safety than ever before. Things we never thought about before, such as Covid-safe hygiene practices, sharing communal spaces with other guests, and contact tracing are now front of mind. When you stay at a LOCAY property, you can be assured that Covid-safe practices and guidelines are being followed at all times. This includes use of commercial-grade cleaning apparatus and chemicals, daily sanitisation of communal areas, limits on guest occupancy of communal facilities, hand sanitising stations, and free face masks and gloves for guests. Additionally, there are reduced housekeeping options available, so you can keep staff and guest contact to a minimum.
So what’s next?
One thing is clear, the last year has changed our priorities and made us understand the value of the whole travel experience. Whilst it is still unclear exactly how travel is going to look in the future, the way we think about it may have changed forever.
Discover the less ordinary and live like a local, book your next Sydney trip with LOCAY.