The Challenge of Covid-19 for Youth Travel
This paper analyses the effects of the first seven months of the Covid-19 pandemic on youth travel. Surveys of youth travel businesses between March and September 2020 showed youth tourism businesses were severely impacted, with a 26% drop in business volume in Quarter 1 of 2020 falling to -70% by May 2020. Business prospects for the year 2020 were dire and more than 80% of businesses expected their business prospects to get worse over the coming year. The effects of the pandemic were felt in all world regions and across almost all industry sectors. Youth travel businesses adopted a range of tactical and strategic measures in response to the crisis, including changing terms and conditions, increased marketing, creating partnerships and shifting business online. As youth travel depends on social interaction there are major challenges for the industry in future, but also a number of potential opportunities, such as the growth in domestic travel and the rise of digital nomads.
Keywords: Coronavirus / Covid-19; Crisis; Business impacts; Youth travel; digital nomads.
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