A survey commissioned by Amadeus of consumers in Spain, Germany, France, the U.K., India, Russia, Singapore, the U.S., and the United Arab Emirates revealed that the travel appetite is high. At the same time, it made clear that greater clarity on travel restrictions and policies is crucial to increasing people’s traveler confidence.
More than one-third (35 percent) of travelers said that the current international guidelines about where and how to travel are confusing, which discourages them from booking business and/or leisure trips.
The top concern among for example German travelers is self-isolation/quarantine before and after travel (39 percent), followed by changes in travel restrictions that can lead to last-minute cancellations (38 percent) and no-refunds for bookings already made (37 percent).
At the same time, travelers are increasingly open to technology solutions and are willing to share health data so they can travel again.
When asked about their willingness to share personal health data, the survey results show:
93 percent of travelers worldwide would be willing to provide personal data for the effective use of digital health passports or certificates – a slight increase from 91 percent in February 2021.
Almost half (48 percent) of business travelers worldwide would be willing to share their health data to attend a conference or event. In comparison, 36% of leisure travelers would share their digital data for a trip or activity at their destination.
When asked what technology would increase travel confidence over the next 12 months, mobile solutions remain the most popular. The most important technologies seen globally are:
mobile apps that provide notifications and alerts while traveling (44 percent), self-service check-in (41 percent), contactless mobile payments (e.g. Apple or Google Pay, Paypal, Venmo) (41 percent), automated and flexible cancellation policies (40 percent).
Mobile apps and contactless technologies emerged as the most important technologies, with automated and flexible cancellation policies added.
The study is the third in a series of travel sentiment surveys in which Amadeus regularly examines traveler sentiment and concerns to effectively help the industry transform travel. Both the Rethink Travel 2020 survey (September 2020) and the Rebuild Travel Digital Health survey (February 2021) demonstrated how technology can help build the travel confidence.
Experts revisited this question to see how traveler trust has changed since September 2020. 97% of travelers now say technology will increase their confidence in travel, up from 91% in February 2021 and 84% in September 2020, showing increasing traveler confidence in technology.
Looking to the future of travel and sustainability, the survey revealed what solutions travelers believe could help the industry become more sustainable in the long term. Almost half (46 percent) of travelers would like to see greater availability of environmentally friendly transportation, such as electric planes or trains. A similar percentage (44 percent) believe it would be beneficial if sustainable travel became more competitive. 41 percent believe transparency regarding travel companies' sustainability policies would be helpful.
Although people’s willingness to travel in the next year is high, the travel industry needs to consider how to respond to travelers' changing concerns as the travel environment continues to adapt. The top three concerns of travelers include the fear of contracting COVID-19 while traveling (41 percent); self-isolation or quarantine before and after travel (41 percent); changing travel regulations leading to last-minute cancellations (37 percent).
The travel industry still faces many challenges in the face of COVID-19, but we are seeing positive steps as travel restrictions are lifted and developments in digital health certificates advance globally. The study shows that the desire to travel continues to grow and that travelers are looking forward to advancements in areas such as contactless technology, digital health and sustainable travel.
It is also very clear that technology will play an even stronger and central role in international travel in the future. In addition to solutions that support contactless and biometric processes, these technologies include, for example, digital health passports that enable safe and worry-free travel in times of pandemic.