In March 2020 the world stopped. Air travel dropped 60% globally, according to the International Civil Aviation Organization. Hotel occupancy in the United States was down 33% from 2019. International tourist arrivals worldwide, which had reached 1.5 billion in 2019, according to the UN World Tourism Organization, plummeted 74% to just 381 million.
Fast forward to a little more than a year later to today, and so much has change. As the vaccine rollout continues and people return to travel we encounter a set of issues and challenges that the travel industry may not have expected or been prepared for.
There’s a new overwhelming demand across the country for travel. A demand that as much as we all wanted and prayed for, the industry wasn’t prepared for it to return like it has. As you travel this summer and fall, you will experience firsthand the effects of all the losses of employees all across the hospitality industry, hotels, restaurants, airports, rental car companies, theme parks, etc.
As you wait in a long line at a theme park, or waiting to check in at a hotel, or waiting for a table at your favorite restaurant I will remind you one thing, be patient. We will get back to “normal” but in the meantime take a moment to thank those hospitality employees who are simply working to do their best.