Coronavirus: No cancellations from May onwards
The travel industry is in a complicated situation, although there have been other crises, such as the SARS coronavirus pandemic in China in 2002, the speed and global nature of the spread of COVID-19 is unprecedented.
In the short term, the situation is serious, and has no indication that it will change, but for the months of May onwards, the situation appears to be different.
Most of the programmed stays, between March and May, have been cancelled and reservations have been held up. In addition, the contingency plans and measures established by the different governments of the countries oblige them to stay at home.
Mirai has carried out a study of the situation where they address what is being experienced and how it presents itself, in a slightly more long-term future.
The cancellations are growing. The week of March 9 has 70% of cancellations.
But many customers are still hoping that this situation will start to change and there are no cancellations for May.
“The cancellations are currently concentrated in March and April, but they do not go beyond that. Demand is awaiting developments, but still shows intention to travel if the situation stabilizes. It is key to keep these reservations alive without them being cancelled, giving customers facilities until the end”, Pablo Delgado, Mirai’s CEO, comments. “Normally, there is a lot of contained demand while waiting for events to happen”, he continues.
“A price war is predicted soon, if it’s not happening already”
It is also important to make sales more flexible. To give a guarantee to the traveler of cancellations without costs or modification of dates. Removing the fear of booking is key, nowadays everything is very changeable, in a week can give a whole big turn, so being able to cancel or modify is important.
In addition, as Delgado says, “From June onwards there is something else (of reservations) but far from the expected, which predicts a price war soon, if it is not happening already”.
People will want to travel again once all the alarms are cleared, and when that happens, the tourism industry will come back in force.