Denmark: Luggage storage company LuggageHero has published the results of a customer survey which registered the responses of British would-be travellers in relation to the impact of Covid-19 on their travel plans and their sentiment towards travelling when lockdowns begin to be lifted.
The customer sentiment survey was conducted between 5-9 April, via online forms and ensured gender and age balance, as well as geographical representation, polling 2200 people.
In comparison with a similar survey that the company conducted last month, the April results overall show an ongoing eagerness to travel, albeit with a different sentiment of a slightly higher degree of caution.
The unprecedented effects of the Covid-19 pandemic on travel continue to be greatly felt throughout the United Kingdom and the world, with people altering their current travel plans.
But, even as stay-in-place restrictions have been added or strengthened around the country, many travellers still remain optimistic about hitting the road again later this year, according to the latest survey by LuggageHero, which provides short-term luggage facilities in 40 European and North American cities.
Current travel sentiment
Nearly 60 per cent of those surveyed had a trip planned for April or May, and most of them [89 per cent] had already cancelled those trips or were about to. Adding to the economic impact, more than half were planning to travel with at least one other person.
In a big show of optimism, 72 per cent said that they were sticking to those plans as long as their home bases or destinations were not under a quarantine. That means that, for now, there is only a 28 per cent impact on the travel industry from June to December.
When asked about the travel period of June to December, 58 per cent of Brits already had trips on their calendars, and more than two-thirds were planning to travel with at least one other person.
Change in scenery
Out of the people saying they would still travel from June to December, nearly half [42 per cent] say they would not change their original destination. However, 30 per cent replied that they would now attempt to avoid big cities and public transportation and instead focus on parks and the outdoors.
Half of the respondents were still planning to travel abroad, while 45 per cent said they would consider replacing international travel with domestic travel in 2020.
Only seven per cent of British respondents said they would now not travel at all in 2020, compared with 18 per cent in the earlier survey. Perhaps the longer would-be travellers are forced to stay indoors, the more they think about future travels.
Caution is on the increase
LuggageHero conducted a similar survey three weeks earlier. Now, only 40 per cent of participants say they are sticking to the same travel budget for 2020 that they started with before the coronavirus hit: 28 per cent will reduce their holiday expenses up to 40 per cent, while 32 per cent of respondents say they will cut their budgets by more than 40 per cent, this being an eight per cent drop from the results three weeks ago, potentially signifying further tightening of the belt.
Respondents to the April survey still show a great willingness to travel in the future but with a slightly higher degree of caution overall. Most significantly, the previous survey showed that 53 per cent would stick to their same travel budget.
Within just three weeks, that number had dropped by 13 per cent. In the matter of changing from overseas travel to domestic, the number has grown from 17 per cent in March to 45 per cent in April.
Destination decisions changed slightly, with two per cent more people [from 28 per cent to 30 per cent] wanting to avoid urban destinations in search of places focusing on nature and the outdoors.
LuggageHero CEO Jannik Lawaetz said he was heartened by the ongoing will and sentiment of travellers to explore the world and seek new experiences.
He said: “Although people, rightfully, are cancelling trips in the immediate future and perhaps delaying others, it’s clear that our customers are still committed to travelling. We believe that demand will come back stronger than ever as soon as it’s safe to travel.
“Personally, I can’t wait,” he added.
Meanwhile, Lawaetz said that the travel industry overall was looking at ways to make services more valuable and convenient to travellers in the future, while also keeping an eye on safety and hygiene.
He said: “The industry is now busy looking at how we can adapt to what we believe will be a new way of travelling. That will likely mean things like extra hygiene practices, contactless payment, increased online interaction and any other approaches that can turn this crisis into an opportunity for safer and more enjoyable travel for us all.
“For our part, my team at LuggageHero is poised to implement new practices that will increase our customers’ enjoyment, savings and safety,” he added.
For more information, visit the LuggageHero April survey on the company website here.