A few weeks ago a friend and I met over coffee. We talked about routine, working from home and current events until, with some weariness, one of us said: “I need to take a trip”. Mobility restrictions and a curfew have added a state of apathy that it seems we can only dissolve by walking on the sand of a Caribbean beach or visiting a distant Asian city like Hong Kong.
However, at the end of the conversation, we both came to a much more telling conclusion: maybe just enjoying a day at the beach on the Costa Brava or sharing a table with our parents is enough.
We have learned to see the little things because they have been within our reach.
In these months, our former Instagram traveler is deceiving us. This need to fly very far to show it on social networks and transfer the stress of our routine to travel circuits. Take as many flights as possible and plan a Cancun vacation seven months in advance. This alter ego has been tamed and today many of us conceive of travel more as a reconnection with pre-pandemic life than as a hedonistic ritual.
“We have learned to see the little things because they are the ones that were within our reach and, perhaps, for the first time, we give them a different value. It helps us to live with the frustration of wanting to resume a normal life even if at the moment the situation still does not allow it, ”explains psychologist Emanuela Siciliani to La Vanguardia.
“Travel is a good way to feel that we are living a life closer to what we were used to, but above all it is an opportunity to reconnect with others, with the unknown, and to get out of the zone of comfort that we have created over the past year,” he adds.
Added to this different way of perceiving our needs and our environment is the fear (and the consequent self-assurance) of long journeys and all that this entails at the moment: checks, health tests or dates for the opening of borders which dance at the according to the vagaries of the pandemic.
The restrictive measures of each country make mobility difficult and this generates insecurity for us
“At the moment we are still in a state of uncertainty: the restrictive measures of each country make mobility difficult and this generates a high degree of insecurity, although on the other hand we also receive with enthusiasm the encouraging data on vaccination,” continues Emanuela. “We must continue to have more patience before we can resume major travel. During this time we can enjoy the beauties that we have nearby, visit small towns and discover their corners”.
The alchemy of this summer’s travels
The map of all these little things draws horizons as close as they are sensory: all we have to do now is take advantage of rural accommodation, reconnect with our loved ones while taking advantage of the end of the state of alert, or play at feeling in an inhospitable place lulled by the breeze.
According to a survey carried out by Yescapa, one of the main motorhome and motorhome rental portals for individuals, the main motivation of Spaniards for this summer is to enjoy tourism. slow (50% of respondents), of which 19.3% reside on family visits. 35% plan to travel outside of Spain and 12% say they will travel less this year. The investigation also shows that the van camper It will be the preferred means of transport for Spaniards this summer.
“When the pandemic started, many people realized that there was no safer mode of vacation than caravanning, since you establish the security measures yourself in your mobile home,” José said. Manual Jurado, President of ASEICAR (Spanish Association of Caravanning Industry and Trade). “Esta seguridad, unida a la libertad que da moverte de un lado a otro, estar hoy en la playa y mañana en la montaña, y el contacto directo con la naturaleza, ha hecho que mucha gente se acerque y descubra por fin el caravaning en Spain.”
Traveling as a family and strengthening emotional ties in an itinerant space also reveals another of the drivers of this new connection: reunions with family members. Tourist Radar, a study by STA Consultores, PR Central agency and Oghen Consulting, in Mexico, reveals that 32% of their travel-related social media conversations in 2021 mention the word “family”, “relative” or ” parents”. ”. ”. A trend already confirmed by concepts such as the grammeror the holidays of grandparents and grandchildren.
We seek to recover the time lost with our loved ones, but also to take advantage of all those waiting pleasures, to lose ourselves in the seabed of the Mediterranean or to savor the proposals of new restaurants as a “reward”.
“We want to reclaim all those customs that have been closed to us for so many months, even if they are as simple as hosting a dinner party at home, going out for a few beers with friends or taking a getaway somewhere nearby. “, tells the sociologist at La Vanguardia Javier Arenas, who believes that it will still be necessary to wait to see a “champagne effect” in long-distance travel:
“Some countries have already made a lot of progress in vaccination and are looking forward to receiving tourists again, but in any case I do not think they will reach the level they had before the pandemic,” he continues. “A lot of people have developed the fear of hoarding people and it’s not going to go away so quickly even though the pandemic has passed. This fear may still last for a few more years.
Maybe it’s time to pick up the stories the pandemic has crippled or wake up in a trailer somewhere
Maybe, for now, it’s enough to just sit on a beach and watch the sunset. Go back to all the stories the pandemic has crippled or wake up in a trailer somewhere in La Mancha. Feeling that a trip between two provinces can be just as inspiring as a trip between two continents. Log back in before you travel. Maybe this summer Hong Kong can wait.