AAfter one of the most challenging years for travel and hospitality, Ritu Mehrotra of Booking.com, lists top trends that will dominate the industry in 2021.
Ritu says that through the pandemic, one-third of airlines were shut down, and hotel room occupancies were down to five to 10 percent. But through the end of the year, certain segments started to pick up a bit. However, “This is not the fight of months or weeks. It will take us years for the (travel) industry and businesses to come back to normal,” she adds. For Booking.com, reaching pre-COVID-19 levels will take time. While the last quarter was incremental, Ritu says that for the online travel platform, its businesses globally is nowhere close to where it is.
By the end of 2020, while governments lifted lockdowns and travel restrictions, people were still not confident enough to fly. However, short travels, “Closer to home and drivable distances” picked momentum, she says. Listing the trends that will dominate the travel industry in 2021, Ritu lists:
- Domestic tourism making a comeback
- Alternative accommodation
- Short booking window
- Longer stay windows
- Work-friendly locations
- Weekend getaways and staycations
- Sustainable tourism
This is an excerpt from an article originally published on YourStory.