There is no doubt that the COVID-19 pandemic has hit the travel and tourism industry hard. But while recovery is expected over time, how we travel, whether internationally or domestically, is not likely to return to the way it was. So what long-term changes have the COVID-19 pandemic made to travel?Comparisons have been made with 9/11, the last significant international incident to impact on the travel industry. It marked the introduction of a host of strict security measures. However, it was a single terrorism event whereas COVID-19 is a global pandemic that has been impacting travel for over six months (so far). But with health conditions now critical to passengers, drivers and pilots, and maintenance staff, many of the protective measures introduced to halt the spread of the novel coronavirus are expected to continue. In fact, Royal Caribbean Cruises CEO Ricard Fain has said that ‘travel and tourism will grow … not by reverting to what it was, but by adjusting to a world where all activities, everything we do in the world will have changed’.
5 Ways COVID-19 Will Change Travel For Good
- Air Quality Matters
The air quality will be a key feature, with air filtration systems in cabins and carriages likely to be enquired about by passengers. So much so, HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) will become as well-known an abbreviation as ETA. Many airlines, like Air Canada, WestJet, JetBlue and Delta have been quick to make it known they are equipped with these systems.
- Increased Cleaning and Disinfecting
Already recognized as the minimum measure in the fight against COVID-19, cleaning and disinfecting standards are more critical than ever before. Airlines, cruise lines, rail companies, public transport service providers, and commercial vehicle operators have all enhanced their cleaning regimens, using approved disinfectants and cleaning agents at greater daily frequencies. In New York, the MTA’s cleaning regimen is described as a ‘24/7 operation’, while in Toronto the TTC has undertaken it’s most thorough cleaning and disinfecting measures ever.
- Masking Up
Many countries have already made mask-wearing compulsory, whether on buses, trams, trains, metros, or airlines. The policy has had great success in fighting the COVID19 spread. In France, for example, some 150 COVID19 clusters were detected between May and June, but none were linked to any of the country’s metro, tram, light rail, or urban bus systems. Why? Passengers have been wearing masks so not dispersing virus-infected aerosol.
- Visible Hand Sanitizer Dispensers
Before the COVID-19 pandemic, we hardly thought about disinfecting. Now, it’s so important that hand sanitizers are among the most sought-after personal health products. Its efficacy in killing viruses on hands and skin ensures its go-to status is likely to continue. Subway, train, and bus stations, as well as ports and airports, will need to ensure approved hand sanitizers with over 60% alcohol solution are publicly accessible in dispensers – and travellers will be expected to use them.
- Physical Distancing
The days of the rush-hour squeeze are numbered with physical distancing a concern for mass transit systems. Airlines, bus, and rail companies have already reduced the number of available seats to accommodate the recommended 6-feet (2-metre) distance between passengers. It’s seen as a temporary measure due to the financial impact reduced traveller numbers will have, but there are alternative options:
- Air Quality Matters
- Technology – The development of real-time passenger counting technology could minimize crowding, both onboard and on platforms, and maximize space between passengers.
- Dividers – Airlines are looking at introducing seat dividers or adopting alternative seat designs to enhance protection for passengers.
Effective Disinfecting With VELOSANVELOSAN is a concentrated quaternary ammonia-based compound that disinfects, sanitizes and cleans hard surfaces. It is Health Canada-approved in the fight against COVID-19 (check DIN# 02280825) and is a cost-efficient for commercial vehicle, plane, train or marine vessel operators, in the travel and tourism industry.
- Its patented chemical formulation ensures maximum efficacy for specific needs.
- Its all-in-one formula means it can replace multiple products.
- Availability in 4 Litre jugs, 20 Litre pails, 200 Litre drums, and 1,000 Litre totes, suits a range of supply needs and budgets.
- Its concentrated formula makes 16 bottles per each litre, making it highly cost-effective.
- With 90% of ready-to-use cleaning products being water – stop paying for so much water and plastic packaging.
Boost Personal Hygiene With FORTRESSFORTRESS is a liquid alcohol hand rub sanitizer that ensures the personal hygiene standards of passengers, drivers, pilots, and maintenance staff must meet are achieved. Made in Canada, and Health Canada-approved as effective against COVID-19 (check NPN# 80100716).
- With over 60% alcohol, it kills germs on contact.
- FORTRESS’s patented formulation meets maximum efficacy for individual needs.
- Place in bottles in multiple strategic locations ensuring easy access for employees.
- It is ideal personal hand hygiene alone but doubles up when used with soap and water.
- It is available in 4 Litre jugs and 20 Litre pails to suit supply needs.