“Everyone is mad to travel”

  • After two years of pandemic, indicators point to an obvious monkey to travel on Easter

  • Bookings increase and travel insurance sees an increase of up to 70% compared to before covid

Ana is about to go to Vienna. He will do so after two years without international travel. In 2020, he had to cancel one in the United States. Last summer, and with the fifth wave of covid looming, he opted to stay in Spain, almost always in his own province of Asturias. Also Àlex, who had had to move plans for some time depending on the epidemiological situation, did not hesitate to book flights and a car to travel to Romania in April. “I had to leave Catalonia now,” he says.

After these two years of pandemic, the data shows that there was a certain monkey to travel. A feeling that in Anglo-Saxon countries has been coined as ‘revenge travel’. “While the term may sound silly, it refers to the idea that there will be a huge increase in travel as it becomes safer and things open up again,” said Eric Jones, co. -founder of ‘The Vacationer’ at the ‘Huffington Post’.

“Enjoy while you can”

“I had never heard of it, but it’s true: the whole world is crazy about travel,” confirms Ascen Aynat, co-founder of ‘Capture The Atlas’, a travel guide site where Internet users can search housing. newspaper, car rental or insurance.

“People are traveling more this year for several reasons: the certainty that there will be no border closures; peace of mind that there is a high probability that if you are infected with covid, it will be mild; and the ease of restrictions in most countries if you get vaccinated or tested,” says Aynat. Although she also thinks people have a “let’s enjoy it while we can” attitude.hinting at the arrival of another wave or the intensification of the consequences of the war in Ukraine.

Data supports

“Fortunately the psychosis is decreasing. There are countries to which you can normally travel and, in fact, others are in demand. If we compare with last year, there are cities where the forecast has increased significantly, ”explains José Luis Méndez, president of the Union of Travel Agencies of Madrid.

This entity is part of the National Observatory of Outgoing Tourism, Observatur, which has seen that the “the trend of customers and passengers is to travel more and more“. “If people don’t do it now, it’s because of fear, illness or economic reasons. But the desire to travel is not only there, but has grown. We see it in all the questionnaires and samplings we do.”

“We have been so satisfied that many people need to rest,” says psychologist Elena Dapra

Psychologist Elena Dapra explains that during the pandemic, the population suffered a habituation process. We had no choice but to live with a huge level of uncertainty. Now, it’s not that we have learned to live with it, but that we are already on another scale. “The thing is, we’ve been so contained on so many levels that a lot of people need to relax and take a break from this uncertainty and fear. They don’t want to talk about the pandemic,” he says. In this sense, the Corporate Association of Specialized Travel Agencies (Acave) announced on March 30 that reservations for Easter have increased between 40 and 50% over 2021. And this despite the context of war and the rise in fuel prices. .

“Just in case” insurance

With all, industry professionals note that some caution is maintained when packaging: “The pandemic is under control in most countries. With the invasion of Ukraine by Russia, the Baltic countries have logically suffered a drop in requests. Greece has fallen a little, part of Turkey… but the rest is working normally and requests have increased more by 20-30% compared to 2021,” says Méndez.

Of course, although it’s more controlled, we’ve gotten used to living with the possibility that things don’t go our way. And that makes them treat safer “just in case”. “There are more and more hirings, even on flights. There has been an increase of 60 to 70% compared to before the pandemic”, explains Méndez, who underlines that it is now “very difficult to sell a trip without insurance”.

Even in Europe

IATI Seguros, specialist in travel and life insurance, also noticed it. “During the last quarter of 2021 and, above all, these weeks before Easter, we have recoveredor billing levels similar to the last months of 2019, despite the fact that the volume of trips was lower than in the previous two years. In addition, these were closer destinations, which confirmed the tendency to take out insurance in Spain. [impensable antes de la pandemia] and on any type of trip,” says Alfonso Calzado, CEO of IATI Travel Insurance. ” I think the the trend to travel with insurance has continuedand. Once you get started, it’s hard to travel without it because of the peace of mind it provides,” adds Calzado.

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“Before covid -he continues-, 90% of the policies issued were intended for destinations outside Europe, among which the USA, Japan or Southeast Asia stood out, but today our customers contract a travel insurance for any destinationeven for countries as close as Italy, Greece or Morocco”.

Summer, the next challenge

Looking ahead to the summer, even though insurers are already seeing strong sales growth, they still consider many users are waiting to see the final settlement to ensure they can travel smoothly to their preferred destination. The president of the Union of Travel Agencies of Madrid points out that, although many people have chosen to book their holidays as early as possible to obtain discounts on the price, they can now take longer. In a few months, we will see if this “itinerant revenge” has not yet reached its ceiling.

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