We all missed travel a great deal when international borders were closed and rigid COVID protocols were in place. So much so that 85% of respondents in an American Express survey said they were planning multiple trips this year. No doubt some of those are reschedulings of journeys canceled in 2020 as the world shut down. Finally, we have the opportunity to roam freely once more, and we are taking advantage of it.
During the pandemic, TV and social media were often our only connections to the wider world, and many of us have drawn inspiration from this and are booking trips to the destinations we could only visit through our screens.
The return has also changed the way we travel, in some cases accelerating trends that were gaining momentum before the pandemic. We’re emphasizing not just the places we visit, but the people welcoming us into their homes. We increasingly want to experience life through locals’ eyes, gaining the perspective of other ways of life. We also take care to spend money with small community businesses in the places we visit, helping out those who depend so much on visitors coming to their lands and saw their livelihoods threatened by COVID. This community support is a pillar of the sustainable travel movement that has steadily gained popularity.
Perhaps because of a leftover aversion to crowds or because we spent time wishing we could be far away during the worst days of COVID, travelers are intent on getting off the beaten path and going to out of the way places. Almost 90% of respondents in the AmEx survey said they want to visit destinations they’ve never been to before in 2023. There’s beauty everywhere and so much world to see.
The pandemic also underscored the importance of mental health and wellness. Nearly three quarters of the AmEx respondents said they place more emphasis on self-care than they did a year ago, and 57% plan to take extended vacations to focus on wellness. We may be as busy as we were before COVID, but now we’re making a concerted effort to decompress when we need it.
We’re back to traveling in a big way, and we’re doing a lot of things differently this time around. The world-class advisors at Marucci Travel/Largay Travel have been preparing, and we’re ready to help you plan your next trips, whichever way you want to travel.