Getting Back on The Road

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NEW YORK, NY / June 20, 2021 / The Covid-19 pandemic has essentially shut down the travel industry, but while the most exciting trip people would make was to the grocery store or Target for the last six months, it appeared that the tides began to shift. As more cities, states and countries opened up borders and loosened restrictions over the summer, people dipped their toes into travel again, but at a much lower rate than expected.

According to a study by the U.S. Travel Association, “A $400 billion decline in travel spending in the US this year will translate into a total economic loss of $910 billion in economic output. This is more than seven times the impact of 9/11 on travel sector revenue.”

This is leading individuals who may have been furloughed or may have lost jobs, to find ways to make stay-cations and short trips a respite and an acceptable replacement to the previously planned two-week Eurotrip. This increased interest in travel is being reflected across the board in terms of purchase trends. Luggage company, Coolife, which sells primarily on Amazon, saw a shift in the pattern as the weather warmed up and many restrictions were lifted over the summer.

Xing Weiwei said, “Our business was definitely affected by the pandemic. No one wants to travel when you can’t enjoy your destination. However, as we’ve seen some locations lift their restrictions, our sales numbers have climbed, undoubtedly because of people excited to get away from the last half year of routine.”

While many travelers are excited about being able to move around again, there’s still cause for concern. In the United States, cities that were early in opening up are facing a spike in cases. Stores and restaurants that opened up early have been forced to close again, because of the caseload and employees catching COVID-19. As the school year has kicked off, there has been an increase of concern over whether it should be in person, with cases rising among students and teachers.

The Coolife founder said, “Of course, we want our customers and all travelers to be safe and comfortable in their journey. We think people should make informed decisions about where they travel to, and really consider if it’s necessary to do so. If they do make the trip, they should be prepared with masks, gloves and disinfectants.”

According to information from artificial intelligence company Zeta Global, 58% of consumers (based on a sample of 44,000 people) are not planning to travel for the holiday season — up from 49% last year and equivalent to 31 million fewer travelers. If customers do travel, it will be domestic, within driving distance, and within the confines of their home state’s quarantine guidelines.

Based on the sales data of luggage alone, Weiwei says “We are seeing greater sales across the board; in our smaller luggage, because people are opting for shorter weekend trips, and in our three-piece sets because some families are picking up to ride out the rest of quarantine in vacation homes or with relatives. We think people are planning for more weekend trips and domestic travel, as well as relocations to “quarantine houses” in warmer climates in the winter. Our luggage allows you to pack a lot into a car, efficiently.”