With holidays and travel dominating the news, we want to help brands understand how best to position themselves and communicate during these unprecedented times. We spoke to our community of viewers, The ITV Village, to ask them about how they are feeling about holiday abroad in 2020.
The great news is that the demand for holidays is high. Our ITV Villagers can’t wait to go on holiday, with over half being open to overseas travel in the foreseeable future. For many, an overseas holiday is seen as the light at the end of the tunnel, a chance to escape and a taster of normality.
I have booked holidays for May 2021 in the hope that there will be some normality then - I also feel that we should have a positive outlook.Male, 35-44
Question to the ITV Village: Are you currently looking to go on an overseas holiday in the next 12 months?
Source: Category & Brand Quantitative Survey & Discussion Room
Base: All holidaymakers (n=502)
There is still some nervousness among our ITV Villagers about booking an overseas holiday, and as a result the travel landscape is faced with three emerging trends:
1. Cancellation culture
Holidays cancellations are rife and there is a clear expectation that this will continue in the months ahead, pushing their planning out to 2021.
2. Practicalities of travel Beyond health fears, consumers see barriers in the amount of ‘faff’ to travel abroad. With increased checks, quarantine procedures, the fear of being stranded abroad in the case of a second wave, and confusing regulations all playing a part.
3. Staycation nation
As lockdown eases within the UK, many consumers are seeing the opportunity to stay closer to home and explore further domestic destinations in 2020, instead setting their sights overseas for 2021 and beyond.
Results from the most recent wave of the YouGov COVID tracker show that demand is still high, with nearly half of respondents (49%) stating that they can’t wait to holiday locally and 43% of respondents can’t wait to book a holiday overseas.
So knowing the demand is high, but nervousness remains, how should travel brands communicate to their audience?
Our top five tips for brand communication & positioning in light of Covid 19:
1. Ensure holiday makers understand how the new normal will affect their travel plans.
2. Help them to understand the practicalities and logistics of travelling at this time, an area which is felt to be currently underserved by the UK government.
3. Convey messages of reassurance, both from a financial standpoint and safety perspective; these are key to help reignite the desire to travel again.
4. Prioritise messaging around industry gold standard ATOL/ABTA protection over brand-led refunds at this stage.
5. Focus on how a holiday or destination will fulfil consumer needs around pleasure, happiness, new experiences and long lasting memories.
For any further information on how the ITV Village Travel Study could help you understand more about the category, please get in touch with Glenn Gowen at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Source: ITV Village Travel Study, June 2020 & YouGov COVID-19 Consumer Tracker, 3rd August 2020