Inter-Covid Roadmap : Travel & Hospitality

category - covid-19
type - trends
sector - retail
Our grounded planet is ready to rediscover the thrills of travelling – but trips will never be the same again. Our free Inter-Covid Roadmap report explores in detail the opportunities that now lie ahead for the sector

Read an excerpt from the report below or click here to download the full report featuring all six sectors.

In 2020 we predicted a year of Decelerated Tourism in which a grounded planet would offer time to reflect on our increasingly excessive and unsustainable travel behaviour. And indeed, consumers took a step back from the industry. In late September 2020, just 11% of Britons planned to travel abroad in the next six months, down from 17% at the start of July (source: YouGov).

One year on, the travel and hospitality sectors are ready to be reset. Having used this time to recalibrate, brands can brace for a post-vaccine travel boom, with a strong drive from consumers to rediscover the world.

With remote working now the norm, paired with the collapse of the hospitality category, we will see a greater uptake in digital nomadism, but with a slower, more purposeful approach. After all, consumers are even more aware of the environmental and social impacts of tourism.

Of course, the world will not return to the playground it once was, and we can expect new regulations to determine future trips. From vaccine passports to branded hotel quarantines, travel will move from a free-rein to an anti-choice model, in which trips are carefully designed with Covid-19 in mind, with border controls, quarantine periods and comprehensive health policies.

‘The pandemic has allowed us as a species to take a step back to pause and reflect on why we travel, and re-appreciate travel in a new way,’ says Amanda Ho, co-founder of Regenerative Travel.‘If we’re going to change the trajectory of our planet, it really starts with our individual decisions.’

The full report is now available to download for free below. Members of our trends intelligence platform, LS:N Global, get full access to all of our trend reports 3 months before anyone else. Click here to find out more.


Published by:

27 July 2021

Author: Holly Friend, Rachel Wilson and Gursharan Panesar

Image: Hygge Circles by Nordisk, Ugakei


Left: Flock Together. Right: Pontchartrain Hotel, Los Angeles.

Travel & Hospitality Opportunities

Hotels and venues: Adaptability will be key for hotels’ survival in a landscape in which travel remains uncertain. Hotels will have the ability to transform into family-friendly Scattered Schools, like Montage; temporary offices like CitizenM; or even ghost kitchens like Graduate Hotels.

Airlines: For the first time in its history, aviation is scaling back. Britain’s air passenger numbers plunged from 247m in 2019 to fewer than 60m last year (source: Civil Aviation Authority),while Ryanair has warned of a nearly £830m ($1.1bn, €950m) loss (source: The Irish Times) and Norwegian Air has withdrawn its long-haul routes. This is leading to a rethink of the hub-and-spoke airline model, according to McKinsey & Co, with particular focus on non-stop flights.

Domestic tourism: With no certainty over the future of travel restrictions globally, the sector will continue to prioritise local citizens over tourists, enabling them to see their cities in a new light. In Singapore, hotels have launched creative staycations for people to take a break from home offices, while Aparium is focusing on locals as it continues its rapid expansion into America’s under-served second-tier cities.

Sustainable travel: With most air travel grinding to a halt in 2020, there will not necessarily be a rush to return to the skies. Slow travel is being embraced by consumers who are not only experiencing climate anxiety but have also simplified their travel horizons due to time in isolation. Already, disruptors such as Byway are pitching no-fly holidays as a sustainable alternative to over-tourism and carbon offsetting tools such as Aerial are making it possible.

‘The pandemic has allowed us as a species to take a step back to pause and reflect on why we travel’
Amanda Ho, co-founder of Regenerative Travel

Lab Notes

: As long-haul travel resumes, Bleisure will turn from destination-hopping to extended, slower stays. As a result, hotel services will need to be overhauled, offering spaces to learn, work and study, as well as opportunities to give back to the local community
: As business travel continues to blend with leisure travel, especially in the context of staycations, consider new work-from-hotel packages for local companies to cater for this nomadic crowd
: Neighbourhood nomads differ from tourists in that they are already hyper-knowledgeable about their cities. To attract this new consumer base, re-engage them in their locale through serendipitous encounters and sustainability initiatives, or collaborate with another destination to introduce cross-cultural spaces
: With the looming climate emergency and time spent in isolation, people are also looking for travel solutions that encourage regeneration, going beyond zero-impact tourism. Move the conversation away from sustainability to focus on regeneration and real purpose

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Inter-Covid Roadmap report now


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