Even while COVID-19 has brought the world to a grinding standstill, it is reassuring to know that there will always be a travel industry. Even if it looks different to the one that we know, the urge to travel is just too powerful a human instinct.
However, for many people with careers in the travel, hospitality and tourism industries there is a more pressing concern. For them, the question isn’t whether or not the travel industry will endure, it is whether or not they will have a place in it. This is where you and I can step forward and be stay at home heroes.
We can be heroes
Unless we want our travel to be governed by big companies offering template holidays, we need to step up and show support for the small to medium enterprises. The businesses that make travel unique and special and that, at the moment, are struggling to keep themselves solvent.
So, what can we do to help?
Don’t cancel travel, reschedule
COVID-19 has paused all travel plans but instead of cancelling your holiday and asking for a refund, why not reschedule it for a future date. The destination will still be there when things return to normal and your holiday is waiting for you. Not only will this give you something to look forward to when things improve, it will also help them stay afloat.
On the same note, businesses need to continue to find ways to market themselves and keep their brand and vision alive in the minds of their customers. This sentiment has been echoed by many travel commentators including the likes of The Lost Executive. Now is the time for heroes.
Share, like and comment
Getting you from one place to another takes a lot of moving parts and all of us tend to take the companies behind these movements for granted. Over the last couple of months, the pandemic has swept the carpet out from under them and even industry giants that we thought would survive with minimal sacrifices have had to shut their doors. So, imagine what it must be like for the smaller businesses trying to keep a brave face.
The power of contributing
While money is tight all round, you can still engage with these companies. This includes liking, sharing and commenting on the social media posts made by your favourite travel businesses. This has a significant impact not only on their marketing strength but also in the motivation to ride out this current lull. Positive and constructive comments are so important in today’s world, especially when there is much fear and negativity going around.
Be more positive about the future
There is a lot of fear being spread around at the moment. Not only fuelled by the media but also by social media alarmists who are always one sneeze away from lying on the roof with a rifle!
As consumers and travellers now is the time where we can change the way we are speaking about things. Precautions and official advice need to be followed but this should never stop us from dreaming about travelling and talking about our future adventures.
Dream big and plan
Right now, travel may be difficult if not impossible. If you are at home, why not spend your time mapping out the next safari or tour? Take this as an opportunity to communicate with the operators and agents who are also home and can help. They can give advice on the best routes, suggest those special excursions and make deals with hotels, lodges and transport. They may not know exact timelines on when the adventure will happen, but they will definitely help you with the how, the where and the what.
We’re in this together
Psychologically speaking, planning for the future helps remind us that whatever is happening now is temporary and we have no reason to panic. Yes, this includes bulk buying toilet paper and taking what we read on Facebook as gospel!
Travel professionals and travel businesses rely on the travel industry, but they rely on us even more. We cannot let them down. They need us. So, remember, reschedule don’t cancel, like, share, comment and be a hero.