Global travel writers show cautious optimism for travel in 2021 - Insights
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Global travel writers show cautious optimism for travel in 2021

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Global travel writers sentimentAn overwhelming majority of global travel writers (94%) plan to resume travel this year for first-hand reporting, a strong indication of the pent-up demand for travel with recognition about safety with the availability of coronavirus vaccines, according to a Finn Partners Global Travel Practice survey released.

The survey of about 400 travel writers and content producers in North America, Asia, and Europe was conducted in December.

Attitudes about travel are shifting as vaccines are distributed and a new U.S. president prepares to take office. The majority of travel writers surveyed said they will promote travel and tourism before the pandemic is over as travel entities demonstrate responsible safety practices. They also believe President-Elect Joe Biden and his administration will make international travel to and from the U.S. more accessible to everyone. More than a third of the respondents (37%) will start traveling only after getting vaccinated.

While travel writers have considerable professional interests at stake with the recovery of the industry, their optimism is largely reflected in the public at large. A new public opinion poll from Yahoo Finance and The Harris Poll last month found half of survey respondents plan to travel out of state within six months of their vaccines.

Cathy Feliciano-Chon, Founder & Managing Director, CatchOn, A FINN Partners Company with offices in Hong Kong and Shanghai commented, “This is the second survey that our Global Travel Practice has conducted during this most unforgettable year. As we enter 2021 with renewed hope and an even greater desire to travel, this survey provides valuable insights to inform our recovery efforts.”

Travel Priorities for 2021

The FINN poll also asked travel writers about their preferences, inspirations and opportunities for future travel and how it will impact their work. With travel wanderlust at an all time high, over 60% of those surveyed would like to visit places they have not been before, domestically and internationally. Thirty-seven percent would like to revisit their favorite destinations. More than half of respondents will rely only on their first hand experiences when reporting making a swift return to travel even more important. Other survey findings included media’s belief that keeping travel top of mind and promoting it even during the pandemic is important.

Hot Content Topics for 2021

The FINN survey asked writers to rank topics based on their travel writing outlook this year Topics were varied, however the majority (67%) think domestic stories and headlines on destinations closer to home will be their top focus. Ranked in order of topic preferences:

  1. Close to home travel 67%
  2. Underrated destinations 54%
  3. Responsible travel 47%
  4. Health and wellness 42%
  5. Travel safety 37%
  6. Travel innovation 36%
  7. Non-travel 16%

And according to respondents, the hot topics post-COVID when borders reopen and travel resumes will be about:

  1. Brands driving positive changes in travel (sustainability, all-accessible design, community benefit, etc.) 32%
  2. Deals and safety protocols 32%
  3. Pandemic influenced airports, airlines and hotels of the future 10%

Bucket List Destinations Around the World

Travel writers were asked to name destinations they have not visited before and would consider bucket list. Japan tops the list followed by South America and Iceland. Perhaps those who had cancelled travel plans to the Summer Olympics in Tokyo hope to make good on their trip to The Land of the Rising Sun this year.

  1. Japan
  2. South America
  3. Iceland
  4. Australia
  5. Africa
  6. New Zealand
  7. South Africa
  8. Greece
  9. Europe
  10. Peru

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