Prior to the pandemic, international trips made up 90% of all travel bookings. But in the 10 months following, international trips dropped to 67% of bookings. Previously, European countries dominated travel bookings, making up for 45% of all trips. But after international travel bans due to Covid-19, European trips accounted for less than 10% of travel going into 2021.
Some Caribbean countries that remained open to American travelers during the pandemic saw massive gains in trips from the previous year. For example, trips to Turks and Caicos increased by 303% and trips to the U.S. Virgin Islands increased 207%, according to a Squaremouth analysis of travel insurance policies purchased between March 12, 2020 and Oct. 19, 2020. By comparison, trips to the United Kingdom fell 56% during that same period.
Travelers Spent Less on Trips, Flexibility and Travel Insurance Will Be Key in 2021
Since the onset of the pandemic, the average trip cost has dropped by more than 13%. By the end of 2020, travelers were spending roughly $1,600 less on travel compared to the months preceding the pandemic, according to Squaremouth. This decrease in spending may be partially explained by travel deals.
With so much uncertainty surrounding travel and the pandemic, refundable bookings play a key role for travelers who want the ability to cancel a trip at the last minute. That same flexibility will be an important factor this year, as travelers book trips with the hope that they can get vaccines in time for their vacations.