More than two years on from the onset of the global pandemic, widespread concerns about COVID-19 appear to be declining, as international travel resumes amid fewer travel restrictions and rising vaccination rates.
According to a live poll conducted by data and analytics company GlobalData, 57% of respondents are ‘not concerned’ or are ‘not very concerned’ about the spread of COVID-19, suggesting that tourists are more prepared to live with COVID-19 than ever before.
“However, the turbulence and uncertainty of COVID-19 has created several challenges that are likely to further complicate recovery,” says Hannah Free, Travel and Tourism Analyst at GlobalData.
“Rising demand, coupled with mass layoffs and competition for talent with other sectors, has resulted in widespread labour shortages in several tourism economies such as the UK, the Netherlands and Spain.
“The global travel and tourism industry’s post-pandemic recovery is gaining traction as pent-up demand for international travel rekindles. According to GlobalData’s latest forecasts, on a global scale, international departures will reach 68% of pre-COVID levels in 2022,” Free predicts.
“This is expected to improve to 82% in 2023, and 97% in 2024, before fully recovering by 2025 at 101% of 2019 levels. There is reason to be cautiously optimistic for the return of travel demand as growth in international travel is finally expected in 2022.”