Find out the latest news across the cruise industry and how cruise lines are responding to the current travel climate. In this Cruise News Round-up, we look into the future of travel including what changes we can expect from airports; what people are looking for in their future travel plans and the benefits of using a travel agent.
- How are cruise lines preparing for the future?
- What changes can we expect from airports?
- What are the popular future travel plans?
- The benefits of using a travel agent
How are cruise lines preparing for the future?
Many of the cruise lines are beginning to plan and prepare for the return of passengers on-board. In addition to normal health and safety protocols, Crystal Cruises has adopted further preventative measures to offer confidence for customers, including health screenings and advanced cleaning procedures.
Seabourn has followed similar steps, with Rick Meadows – President of Seabourn – saying, “when we resume and social gathering is acceptable once again, we will do so with the health and safety of our guests, crew and the people in each of the destinations we visit as a priority, just as it has been throughout our history.”
Boutique river cruise line, Uniworld have also escalated measures on-board ready for return including health screenings for guests; ensuring gloves, face masks and hand sanitiser are readily available; requiring contactless payments on-board; and undergoing health and hygiene training (HACCP) for all crew on-board.
What changes can we expect from airports?
It’s not just the cruise lines that are preparing for changes in travel, the airline industry is also taking significant measures to provide travel safety once the world begins to return to normality. Digital technologies and automation especially will play a critical role in the future of air travel, with the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) stating “the ‘new normal’ at major airports, such as Heathrow, JFK and Singapore Changi will include almost exclusive use of online check-ins, and contactless payments”.
Other implementations we might see include the adaption of spaces to encourage social distancing and adding touchless solutions to the boarding process. UK airline, Ryanair, has already revealed it plans to restore 40% of its flight schedule from July, with requirements including all passengers and crew to wear face masks and pass temperature checks. With many of us ready to book for 2021, we’ll watch closely how these changes evolve.
Read more: Ryanair plots July return
What are the popular future travel plans?
A recent study undertaken by our sister company, Cruise118.com, revealed which destinations are top of the list to visit first. Results included that many of us are longing to travel as soon as we are safely able, with over 75% of customers responding that they have either already booked or are planning a 2021 holiday. It seemed that late 2020 bookings were also in high demand with over 50% also stating that they still intended to travel this year if they are able to.
As for destinations, the first place most people are packing their suitcase for is the Mediterranean or the Caribbean, with the United States close behind in popularity. Other destinations customers will be planning to visit included Asia, the Norwegian Fjords and Northern Europe. Many respondents also confirmed that the current climate made them more likely to book a once-in-a-lifetime holiday to a bucket-list destination, with some customers stating they ‘want to visit as many places as possible’, ‘life is too short’ and they ‘have missed travel during lockdown’.
A third of customers also agreed that being able to travel freely and explore a new place were the top reasons they were looking forward to their next holiday. Despite the current climate temporarily halting many of our travel plans, the results prove that the appetite for exploring the world and travelling is still very much present and we all can’t wait to set sail again soon.
Read more: Cruise118 Recent Customer Survey
The benefits of using a travel agent
With travel agents holding supplier relationships with hotels, cruise lines, flight operators and more, they are at the core of all things travel. From learning your individual preferences to knowing your travel history, your own travel agent can take care of all your holiday needs in one call.
In the current climate, having to cancel separate elements of a holiday requires patience and much of your personal time. With a travel agent, they can offer reassurance and will do all the hard work to make it right, whether that involves cancellations or rebookings. Additional expertise on health and documentation requirements is also something a travel agent provides, saving you the effort of your own research.
Results of a recent survey undertaken by our sister company, Cruise118.com, stated that the top reasons travel agents can add value included the exclusive discounts and booking security. Agents have direct access to suppliers which can offer them perks like free upgrades or on-board credit that direct bookings simply can’t match.
What most people are seeking is more time and less stress, and a travel agent can provide exactly that. Leave it to the experts to arrange your next holiday of a lifetime and look ahead to your future getaways with your personal travel agent by your side.