At the height of the pandemic in 2020, many wondered if things could get worse for the tourism sector, praying for travellers to return to the skies as soon as possible. In 2021, we enjoyed a brief sensation of travel recovery as Americans took to the skies and flew South, just as many Northern Europeans did over the summer months with Greece, Spain and Turkey showing the most resilience to turbulence. Sadly, the end of the year witnessed the steady increase of new cases, a new variant and new travel bans put into place.

In this new analysis by ForwardKeys which you can download at the end, we demonstrate that there are signs to be optimistic about in 2022. Here is one trend we can share here with you all, but for the full report with the four key trends, which have the potential to make a huge difference tomorrow, you must click download. Are you ready?

Key Trend 1: The Pent-Up demand is Real

One of the four key trends we share with you today is the continuous existence of pent-up demand. When people are not allowed to travel, it is difficult to assess how eager they are to book a trip. One way to get an idea of the scale of the pent-up demand is to look at what happens when travel restrictions are lifted in other parts of the world.

Let’s do this exercise with Australia, a country that has applied very strict travel restrictions until its reopening in November. From the moment the Australian government announced a reopening date, we could see a rapid acceleration of bookings from key source markets like the UK, Singapore, or the US. This shows that pent-up demand was there all along and only waited for a clear signal from the authorities to be released.

In the case of Australia, this signal took a long time to come, but in other destinations, it came much faster and this, too, provided us with some precious insights about pent-up demand.

Take Greece, for example. Last March, the Greek government announced a reopening of the country to travellers with a Covid certificate. At the very same time, the number of covid cases in Greece was rising at an alarming rate. Given that this rebound of the pandemic was all over the news in Greece’s key source markets, it is fair to assume that people knew about this situation and yet, the number of international tickets to the country grew at a very fast pace, which made Greece one of the success stories of last summer.

What this teaches us is that even when the Covid situation is getting worse, people still want to travel. What stops them is how governments react to the evolution of the pandemic. If they make sure that their country is open for business, the strength of travel demand is such that they will see travellers flying their way.

The team of travel experts at ForwardKeys have been guiding the travel and tourism sector in effective data-backed decision making since 2010. Contact us to learn more about our range of datasets and products or book one of our experts to speak at your next event!

If you would like to uncover the four key travel trends for 2022 with supporting statistical evidence using the most comprehensive flight data from ForwardKeys, download the full analysis below.

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