Have you heard of a ‘vaccine holiday’? This is a new trend in the travel industry with guests travelling for one of of two reasons - either to get the vaccine or because they have already been vaccinated. This is opening up new worlds of possibilities in the tourism space.
With COVID-19 vaccines are being rolled out around the world, travel and pre-pandemic activities are starting to resume for many. This has resulted in a vaccine holiday boom and a pivotal moment for the tourism industry. Many tour operators are starting to take advantage of this trend in order to rebuild their businesses.
Unfortunately, as we have seen in South Africa, vaccine distribution hasn't been consistent around the world. Vaccines are more readily available in countries overseas and even elsewhere in Africa. As a result, travellers are looking to these destinations as they desire to relive their lives. This has resulted in travel to spots where guests can get vaccinated, while of course, adding on additional things to see and do in those countries while on holiday.
The second Vaccine Holiday travel trend we are seeing is travellers returning to destinations as a result of being vaccinated. Travellers who now feel safe to fly, due to having had the shot, are ready to get out and explore new cities and countries, such as South Africa.
The vaccine is providing these travellers with a sense of hope and confidence as they begin to resume activities. These trips are often longer and more luxurious than before as travellers look to make up for lost time. Travellers are also looking for new and innovative products that specifically offer private, personalised experiences that make travel memorable.
As the tourism industry looks to welcome back holiday makers, its important that all policies for social distancing, mask-wearing, hand-washing and disinfecting are maintained. Tour operators and travellers alike also need to make sure they are aware of what documentation is required when travelling to ensure they are allowed into their area of choice, be that proof of vaccine or a negative PCR test.
After a quiet year, the tourism industry is looking forward to being busy once again in 2021, particularly with the introduction of the Vaccine Holiday!
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