Bill Geist’s Zeitgeist: It’s what drove a significant amount of pre-VID tourism over the past five years; the sense that one can learn about a place through its food. Anthony Bourdain showed us this truth…and travel consumers bought into the concept.
As we watch the professional research firms reveal the thoughts of today’s travel consumers, there are also the one-off polls that do not necessarily reflect America, but the readership of a particular online publication.
Such is the case with SmartBrief, a daily compilation of fascinating articles from around the world. The respondents to their polls could be expected to skew white-collar business professionals…and that’s what is so concerning with last week’s poll: Do you expect your dining habits to change after the pandemic?
This series is focusing on how the industry might emerge from the disastrous set of circumstances that the travel, tourism and hospitality sector finds itself in.
The first of four scenarios – Travel swings back to normal in 2021 – was followed by a second idea: The end of mass tourism as we know it. The third was: Big is beautiful in the new travel order.
Phocuswire continues with the next and final theory: Scenario 4: Travel moves from atoms to bits.
Washington Post: Cruise lines are lowering prices to lure passengers back. Right now, though, serious, scientifically backed changes mean more to me than rock-bottom deals. I hope cruise companies take this opportunity to implement policies that rebuild confidence and enhance sailing for the long term.
For me, the reconfigured shipboard experience will need to up the cleanliness ante, decrease passenger numbers and make it easy to maintain social distancing — but stay fun. These changes would help convince me that a cruise vacation is as safe and healthy a choice as a stay at a large resort.
Forbes: Since travel is, ultimately, a state of mind, we consulted ten professional globetrotters on their favorite books to embark upon a journey of the soul. And the diversity of our resulting list reflects the eclectic tastes of our fearless adventurers, always looking forward to the next trans-Atlantic (or trans-Pacific) flight—when they’re not living in a pandemic, of course. It’s safe to say the nomadic experts we consulted are as restless as any reader impatient with life indoors, which makes their reading selections for a mental escape all the more valuable, of course.
I’ll be the first to tell you that I’ve loved every minute of my peripatetic life. Like many TPG readers and pretty much all our staff, I’m a bit obsessed with travel. That’s why I picked travel writing as a career. But, due to the coronavirus outbreak, I was forced to slow down. Not just slow down, but stop cold turkey. I am grounded. And, unexpectedly, I’m finding it wonderful in many ways.
For starters, there’s the chance to enjoy the beauty of the place I call home. But it goes beyond that. The past couple of months have offered the chance to reconnect with my family, and also to rest and recharge in a way that I haven’t done in many, many years.
In short, I’m being forced to stop and smell the roses — literally as well as figuratively, I will add. Our rose bushes are just showing the first signs of blooming.
Washington Examiner: Throughout most of the nation, the curve of the coronavirus has been decisively flattened. The healthcare system has not only survived but also excelled, keeping more than 94% of confirmed infected patients alive, a number that will only increase as testing ramps up. That’s better than Britain’s National Health Service or the healthcare systems of France, Belgium, Canada, Italy, Spain, Ireland, or Sweden, among others.
But there are limits to how quickly commercial and economic life can resume because no government snap of the fingers can restore life to the way it was. Customer-facing businesses, in particular, can resume commercial activity only to the extent that fear of infection fades and customers start coming back in through the Main Street doors.
But it is not only consumers who are fearful. Business owners, too, are worried about legal liability when they reopen. Disney is now requiring patrons to sign waivers, which will doubtless be contested in court. Lawsuits are already being launched against cruise lines, nursing homes, and Walmart. Trial lawyers smell blood. Some people speculate that the coronavirus could be “the new asbestos.”
It’s two months since the Ruby Princess returned to Sydney after its ill-fated cruise to New Zealand, which saw the coronavirus-related deaths of 22 people, now one of the worst cruise tragedies in modern times.
It offers a timely moment, ahead of any release of the ocean cruise industry’s full global recovery plan, to examine what it will need to do in order to make a comeback.
Here, based on the benefits of 20/20 hindsight, are 10 tough-love steps from a cruise fan (yes, we still do exist), that the troubled industry should consider as it embarks on its uncertain path to recovery, according to Stuff.
Sun Sentinel: It had to be done. We have to get our economy going again. We can’t wait for a vaccine, miracle drug or daily testing capabilities. We must find a way to live with the novel coronavirus spreading among us. The question is whether the roadmap — released Thursday for implementation on Monday — will let Florida’s hotspot counties reopen as safely as possible, or is too much, too soon.
STAT News: Over the course of the Obama presidency, a pandemic infrastructure was put in place. It included recommendations for a top-level White House official devoted to planning and responding to emerging infectious threats and, to guide that person’s work, the “Playbook for early response to high-consequence emerging infectious disease threats and biological incidents.”
Washington Post: Cruise ships operate in a unique, loosely regulated environment that endorses all sorts of questionable practices. What the novel coronavirus has revealed about the cruise industry is a “hidden in plain sight” problem — an international maritime regulatory structure that obfuscates and often ignores legal and social responsibility, accountability and culpability.