The worldwide pandemic has definitely changed the way we travel. At one point, it even seemed that it was going to last forever. If you had the chance to travel during the last two years, you probably know how it went from joy to hassle. Keeping tabs on all the restrictions, going through Covid controls, taking PCR tests, ensuring you have a valid green pass, masks, entry forms, and tight airport control all made traveling during Covid times actually not fun at all.
Remember those happy times when we used to enjoy traveling the minute our booking was confirmed? Today we have something opposite. Even if we get everything right, we are anxious as we are not 100% sure that we can get to the destination. Things have definitely changed, but there is still a place for hope!
Last-minute bookings facilitate the return of business travel
Before we dive deeper into the biggest travel trend to watch for in 2022, we need to address one thing — the change in travelers’ behavior. As a matter of fact, travelers around the globe are more interested in last-minute offers than ever again. Booking lead times have significantly reduced.
One of the recent global hotelier surveys discovers that over 60% of bookings during the pandemic were made within one week of arrival. Despite the restrictions and having to provide additional documents, people didn’t lose interest in traveling.
People are more interested in less frequent but longer stays
While hoteliers and travel companies know how important it is to keep up with travelers’ preferences, needs, and expectations, it’s now always easy to do it. We have some great news for you. People are really hoping to travel in 2022. In fact, over 70% of travelers have plans to travel somewhere in 2022. However, the nature of their plans has changed. They are more interested in less frequent and longer stays.
The same applies to business travelers who are known for extending their trip by a couple of days to have family or friends join them. They have plans for longer trips called “workcation.” These trips include events, meetings, and remote working but also leisure travel. The research finds out that 35% of business travelers wish to add a leisure element to their tips in 2022.
Sustainable travel to become a priority
There is one limiting factor that both business and leisure travelers share – the budget. However, it’s more often seen in the business world where companies try to optimize the cost of business events and travel. There is a new trend on the horizon, and we expect to fully emerge during 2022 – eco-conscious traveling.
Research finds that 60% of travelers converge around the idea that sustainable travel is to become a priority. It’s safe to assume that we will see more businesses of all sizes requesting sustainable services when traveling. It’s clear that corporations worldwide have recognized the impact travel has on the environment, and they are taking an active role in helping minimize the carbon footprint.
Fear of missing out and sense of urgency
If anything, the worldwide pandemic showed people how easy their dreams of visiting new places and having new experiences could crumble. The pandemic disrupted all of their travel plans for 2020 and 2021. In some cases, people had their reservations canceled at the last minute. All of it made people feel like they’ve lost the last two years.
Older travelers suffered the most as they had concerns of their own. For instance, they are worried about how long their health will serve them well to keep them traveling. Many big names in the sector share the same insight — whether it is a sense of urgency or fear of missing out driving them to travel, people are eager to do it and are willing to abide by new protocols to do it.
That’s why some even call the year to come the year of the “GOAT” (the year of the greatest of all trips) .
2022 – the year of the greatest of all trips
Expedia is a huge name in the travel sector, and it invests in extensive studies and surveys every year. Recently, the company has shared some promising survey results. It found that people are planning to go big on their next trip. In fact, 65% of the surveyed people said they want a memorable, exciting, and sort of extravagant trip in 2022.
The data from another research supports these findings. It appears that people are more frequently typing “epic destination” into their favorite search engines, and it is expected to see more people searching for extravagant destinations in 2022. The most sought-after locations are Tanzania, Jordan’s Petra, and Machu Picchu. It goes in line with the spike in the searches for international destinations.
Countries to continue to reopen their borders
Many countries worldwide made their border police even more strict to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Many of those countries are top travel destinations, and many people from those countries are avid travelers. The majority of these countries will reopen for travel in 2022, which is excellent news for everyone, from travel companies to travelers.
The biggest news was the “Fortress Australia’s” announcement that it would reopen its borders from February 21st. For the time being, the borders will open for vaccinated travelers. The other countries with a similar announcement include New Zealand, the Philippines, Bali, and Malaysia. The situation is similar in the EU. Norway, Greece, Portugal, Sweden, and France have announced plans to welcome vaccinated visitors.
It appears that countries, travel companies, and travelers around the globe share the same feeling. Now that the pandemic seems almost over, everyone is excited to travel and welcome travelers. What about you? How are you feeling about traveling again in 2022 as the border policies become less strict? Feel free to share your experience with us.
Patricia is a social media and content manager. Her passion is social networks and being aware of the latest trends, as well as writing about travel topics so that all those readers obtain quality information from her point of view. When she is not writing a new article or discovering the latest trends in social media, we can find Patricia on the outskirts of the city spending time with her animals and taking some pictures.