HOW WILL TRAVEL BE BETTER AFTER THE PANDEMIC?
What will travel look like in our post-pandemic world? The smartest thing I’ve heard so far comes from Elizabeth Becker, author of Overbooked and our own early report on how hard the pandemic will hit the travel industry. “The travel complex will have to grab a seat at the table where government policies are made,” she says. “Travel concerns and travel advocates need to be heard on everything from transportation and public health to the climate emergency, conservation, and foreign policy.”
When we travel we’re understandably excited about the things we can experience. What’s harder to see is the web of stakeholders that makes travel possible. While key segments of the $2.6 trillion U.S. travel industry, such as the transportation sector, receive most government attention, community concerns often struggle to be heard. Becker’s call to reinstate an administration-level travel and tourism body could create a more sustainable path for
Road trips are increasing in popularity:
American tourism as we emerge from the pandemic. (Pictured above, an image of a classic road trip, which has grown in popularity as air travel has declined.)
Other bright ideas will guide our return to travel, writer Steve Brock reports. Our journeys could become more inclusive, says Black Travel Alliance’s Martinique Lewis. “The world will see more diversity in travel post COVID-19 because for the first time we were all forced to acknowledge there is a problem that needs to be solved,” she says.
We will travel less often but with more “consciousness”:
We also will seek quality over quantity in our journeys, says Eulanda Osagiede, of Hey Dip Your Toes In: “Privilege comes in many forms, and the act of recognizing our travel-related ones have called us to think about traveling more intentionally and less often.”
In a recent panel discussion on travel (see me in action here!), G Adventures founder and authorBruce Poon Tip says not only will we travel again, we’ll do it better. “I still believe travel can be the biggest distributor of wealth distribution the world has ever seen,” he says. “This pause gives us the gift of time to consider how we can travel more consciously.”
As we have reported, even just planningyour next trip is good for your health. So don’t stop thinking about tomorrow. Dream of your next journey and add to the ways travel will improve in the future!
By George Stone
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