1 in 4 Americans Want to Travel Immediately After Covid-19 Restrictions Lift

That number goes up to half of Americans after 60 days

an airplane in the sky
Airline executives estimate it will take three years for carriers to recover. Unsplash

Key insight:

Since travel has come to a near total standstill during the Covid-19 pandemic, there will be a ton of pent-up consumer demand once travel restrictions and stay-at-home orders lift.

That’s according to a survey by marketing agency Mower, which measured 1,000 Americans’ willingness to travel once Covid-19 restrictions are lifted (whenever that may be).

It’ll take roughly two months before most Americans feel comfortable returning to “travel-related” activities, such as visting a casino or booking a flight to Europe, according to Mower. However, immediately after restrictions are first lifted, only 28% of Americans would take a road trip, 18% would spend a night in a hotel, and 15% would visit a theme park like Disney World.

By Day 60, 73% of Americans would vacation by car, more than half would fly domestically, and 42% would travel internationally. Half of Americans surveyed would stay in a hotel or a privately owned rental like Airbnb, and visit a theme park.

Notably, 22% of respondents said they would never travel internationally again.

The travel industry is grasping for hope after being pummeled by the sudden and severe drop in travel demand. Airline executives warned that it could take three years to recover, while hotel executives are banking on an uptick in domestic travel to signal the beginning of recovery. That jibes with Mower’s findings, which show vacations by car returning before everything else.

Of course, there’s no nationwide Day 1, as restrictions are lifted state by state. For instance, summer tourism in New York, a state that still has yet to commit to a reopening plan, will be different than tourism in Maryland, which has already begun to open some of its most popular beaches.

@RyanBarwick ryan.barwick@adweek.com Ryan is a brand reporter covering travel, mobility and sports marketing.