The current health pandemic has seriously affected every business sector, but it’s obvious that current restrictions on freedom of movement mean travel and hospitality are particularly impacted.
So whether you’re thinking of launching a startup in this sector, are running a reasonably new business, or are an established player, times are tough.
However, there’s always light at the end of the tunnel and while businesses in nations where lockdowns have already been lifted or eased are already opening up on a local basis (while implementing social distancing), others are making plans to capitalise on the ‘new normal’ when it materialises.
As ever, some firms will fare better than others – let’s take a look at three travel niches that could take off after lockdown.
Since domestic travel restrictions are being lifted before international bans, it’s likely that the staycation will make a serious comeback and people will rediscover the joys of magical spots in their own backyards that they might not have visited since childhood.
This is good news for cafes, pubs and restaurants as well as family holiday firms like Center Parcs – provided customers feel confident that hygiene is enforced more stringently than ever, they’ll feel confident frequenting these businesses and boosting the domestic travel market.
2. Road trips
As well as longer staycations, domestic travellers will be commuting more frequently to work and taking longer road trips on weekends and days off – the freedom associated with the open road will seem even more attractive after weeks cooped up in the house.
This will benefit any business based at pitstops on established road trip routes or near any major thoroughfare – for instance, located on the road north towards York from Sheffield or Nottingham, companies like coffee shop 200 Degrees in Leeds will benefit from the reappearance of passing trade.
Many sun, sand and sea holiday destinations in the northern hemisphere will take until summer 2021 to recover as their operation requires a mutual freedom of movement that’s unlikely to be in place to save the high season this year.
However, the snowsports industry could emerge relatively unscathed thanks to their peak season starting much later in the year and a possible influx of first-time winter holidaymakers unwilling to wait until next summer for a well-deserved break. Ski package firms like NUCO Travel can capitalise on this opportunity and prepare for a surge of interest in their action-packed Alpine retreats.
And there you have it – a hattrick of travel niches that could bounce back strong once the world gets back into gear.
If your travel firm is already working in one of these niches or it’s a support business that benefits by association, plan properly and you might emerge from the maelstrom stronger than ever.