The world is still in a state of emergency. Nevertheless, many people are traveling in the Summer because after the lockdown, a serious escape is required after the lengthy staying within the four walls scenery. As the world is at different stages of the pandemic, the travel options and travel experiences are also contrasting. In this article, we shed light on the current situation around the globe and insight into what the current travel etiquette is like.
China is considered the country where the virus originated, and it was the first country to be affected by a lockdown. In the meantime, China’s situation has reformed a lot, and the number of infected cases is now minimal. The Chinese do tend to travel a lot, albeit in their own country. The Sanya region, which lies by the sea and offers several renowned luxury hotels, is famously trendy. But cities like Shanghai and Beijing are also popular for their so-called staycations. A weekend getaway is a must to be pampered. If you look at the current global travel volume, the Chinese are currently at the top.
Hong Kong, on the other hand, is cut off from the outside world. Some hotels are open here, and the local people also use them to take a break and often escape from their small apartments in a large hotel suite. The situation is similar in Singapore. There is a curfew from 10 pm, and in the evening, the city is deserted. In both Singapore and Hong Kong, it can be expected that both countries will remain closed to international tourism until the end of the year.
Australia / New Zealand
The two countries in Oceania subsequently closed to inbound tourists at an early stage of the pandemic. Local sources predict that both governments plan to keep the countries closed until the second quarter of 2021. The residents there travel, but much more cautiously than in China. This is also because the country offers significantly more space and opportunities for grand experiences. The Australians and New Zealanders, pass their time with day trips or take longer trips with a camper.
The situation in South America has deteriorated significantly in the last few weeks. Mexico and Brazil, in particular, are currently recording high case numbers. The countries in South America are currently closed, but some countries insist on reopening on September 1st. Tourism in South America is now idle. Only Mexico welcomes guests from the USA, where travel is currently still possible. Therefore, many hotels are open in Mexico stands. The national travel activity in the countries is rather low compared to other continents.
Tanzania and Rwanda are currently the countries that receive tourists. Going on a safari in the Serengeti is truly magical, and at the moment, is a unique experience as you have all the wildlife to view almost to yourself. The only problem here is that there are still a few flight connections and mostly via countries with travel restrictions. South Africa is a country that is economically suffering from the pandemic. Therefore, South Africa strives to open its borders for international tourism as quickly as possible. Many South Africans are dependent on tourism, and everything is done to ensure that guests can be received during the high season in December.
Both the US and Canada have closed their borders. USA, with the exception that travel is possible to some countries such as Mexico and Turkey. National tourism is brisk in the USA. Especially in the coastal towns of San Diego and Santa Barbara, the hotels are very well booked, and the people there enjoy the Summer. Post Ranch in Big Sur National Park was fully booked for the whole Summer within a few days, despite prices of USD 1,500 per night. Amangiri, which is located in Utah, had a similar experience. The Americans want to travel and are already so excited that we can see quite a few bookings for Spring/Summer 2021 for Europe. When the US opens its borders remains to be seen – it is quite possible that the border opening will also become a political game connected with the presidential elections.
Europe consists of 47 countries. And there are about as many different opinions and approaches here at the moment. The states have their quarantine lists, which make travel unpredictable. That is why we see a lot of local trips in Europe, and if we are going further away, then it is trips with our own car. In this way, you can ensure that you are flexible in the event of changes and can return home quickly. Masking is compulsory almost everywhere in Europe. The Netherlands and Switzerland are exceptions. Especially when it comes to hotels, Switzerland is practically back to standard – breakfast buffets and waiters without masks. While almost all of the Venice hotels are open, many cities such as Rome, Paris, Madrid, and Barcelona will not follow suit until September.
For many hotels, the current question is whether it makes sense to open their doors. The hotels that receive guests are far from the “normal” number of overnight stays. With their reopening, the luxury hotel industry, in particular, is making a statement that the region is ready for tourism again. Their big problem now is that there are very few reservations currently made, and have to be prepared for last-minute bookings. This raises the question of whether the entire staff is required to ensure operation – but can the usual service quality be guaranteed with reduced staff? In addition to the question of when this pandemic will end, many small questions concern the tourism industry. Here, too, travelers are challenged to make statements with bookings to help the industry recuperate.
Guido Graf is Founder of Privateupgrades. Privateupgrades is a global luxury travel club with over 20 years of experience in luxury hotels, ensuring exclusive VIP privileges like upgrades, free breakfast, free nights, rate discounts, free airport transfers, free massages and much more.