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Vaxications could be the travel industry’s short term saviour

Josephine hasn’t left her neighbourhood since 17 March 2020. Last week the 65 year old and her husband John, 67, were vaccinated and plan to fly from Nashville to Charleston for a post-vaccine vacation, or vaxication, this week. In September they’re planning a trip to Newfoundland.


Like Josephine, other newly vaccinated Americans are starting to travel again, Bloomberg reported. 


“We have seen a 25% increase in travel enquiries since the first round of vaccinations became available,” Denver-based Tafari Travel president Leah Smith said.  


“Pretty much weekly, I am getting emails from clients saying they just got their first vaccination and are ready to plan the next two years of travel.”


“It’s not uncommon to get up to four trip requests in one email,” Smith added. 


“Many clients aren’t even waiting for the second round [of vaccinations] to book a trip.” 


According to high-end travel consultancy Local Foreigner partner Brooke Lavery, these travellers aren’t visiting friends and family.


“People who normally take five to seven trips a year and for whom travel has been a lifestyle for decades are doing celebration trips,” Lavery said. 


But it’s not business as usual, Lavery saying that there is still more interest in destinations that offer outdoor settings and naturally social distanced activities.


“People want to start out with remote places, where they can be outside most of the time,” she said. 


“They’re still not ready to return to busy resorts.”


Melissa Biggs Bradley, the founder of luxury travel firm Indagare said that she is seeing an uptick in immediate travel bookings, not long-term.


“We are seeing much shorter sign-up windows,” she said. 


“People who have just been vaccinated are eager to get away in the next month or two to places that they’d usually spend months planning for.”


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Published: 8 March 2021

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