HSMAI Customer Insight: Delta Variant Setting Off Alarm Bells for Travel Industry | Longwoods

Turning the corner into the latter part of the summer travel season, we see the delta variant having a significant impact on several key Travel Sentiment Indicators and taking us back to levels not seen since April, reports Longwoods International CEO Amir Eylon. See more of his analysis for HSMAI of their latest customer research:


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Fear of Delta Variant Impacting Some Travel Plans

According to the latest Longwoods International tracking study of American travelers, a quarter are postponing travel because of the recent increased spread of the Delta variant of COVID-19. “We may be approaching a new pandemic tipping point, in the battle between the more transmissible Delta variant and the power of vaccinations to prevent or at least lessen the
impact of infections,” said Amir Eylon, President and CEO of Longwoods International, who provides additional insights for HSMAI:

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Google Date-Based Meta Bidding

The pandemic and recovery have led to a rise in direct bookings, which makes metasearch more important  than ever. By Dean Schmit, Founder, Base Camp Meta and MetaSeachMarketing.com, provides insights into a new feature available within google meta search bid levers in this video:

Take advantage of a new Navigating Metasearch on-demand course to learn more about these specialized marketing programs.

Resilience Starts With Your Own Wellbeing

As business comes back, an already stressed and strained hospitality workforce faces even more pressure. Take a pause with performance expert Dr. Jannell MacAulay’s exclusive three-part series on personal, professional, and organizational resilience.

Throughout the pandemic, the long-term effects of furloughs and layoffs on both employees who were let go and employees who remained on staff have been a constant source of concern. That concern has become even more acute as the hospitality industry moves into recovery.

Questions of burnout, overwork, resentment, and low morale have been a regular topic of discussion during HSMAI’s latest series of Executive Roundtable programs, including one for sales and marketing leaders during which a participant noted: “I think what can sometimes get lost in the fact that our financial performance was very good is that it was actually really hard to achieve that. My entire commercial team has been working harder than they ever have in their lives over the last 18 months…. People are exhausted.”

Dr. Jannell MacAulay can help. A leadership and performance expert and retired U.S. Air Force officer, MacAulay presented a three-part series called CURATE PRESENTS: Resilience Now exclusively for HSMAI Organizational Members last fall. Her insights into resilience at the personal, professional, and organizational levels are more resonant than ever, so we’re making these sessions available to everyone. Click on the links below to watch each one:

Session 1 │ Mindful Foundations: How Mindfulness and Reflection Build Mental Toughness — Building mindful awareness is the foundational tool for mental strength. In our first session, you will learn how to train your mind to cultivate calm and focus. You will also discover the simple steps that will enable you to live in alignment with your purpose despite the relentless pressure that you face every day.

Session 2 │ Bouncing Forward: Level Up From Resilience to Reinvention — You need to bounce forward, not bounce back. In session two, you will learn how to slow down your mind and see the advantages in any situation. By learning how to bounce forward and stay in your peak state, you will navigate away from stress and uncertainty, and into creativity and innovation.

Session 3 │ Leading Through Uncertainty: Unlock Peak Performance for Your Team — Mindful leaders build winning teams. During our third session, you will learn strategies for integrating mental skills and effective recovery practices into your team that will prevent burnout and improve performance. These skills will increase revenue and build a sustainable pathway to professional success and personal fulfillment.

HSMAI Customer Insight: Americans Expect Excellent Service as They Resume Travel | Longwoods

According to the latest Longwoods International tracking study of American travelers, more than 80% expect the travel and tourism industry to provide as good or better service than they did prior to the pandemic. This is a concern as these labor shortages in the hospitality and tourism sectors will likely impact the level of service travelers receive at destinations, according to Amir Eylon, President and CEO of Longwoods International. Eylon provides additional insights into the findings for HSMAI:

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The Post-Pandemic Legal Landscape

According to hospitality law expert Greg Duff: ‘There doesn’t seem to be the wave of COVID claims we initially feared.’

At an HSMAI webinar on May 25, Greg Duff, principal and chair of the hospitality, travel, and tourism practice at Foster Garvey, discussed what hospitality professionals should expect from a legal perspective as the industry moves beyond COVID. Watch the full video below — but first get a taste of Duff’s presentation below:

“There doesn’t seem to be the wave of COVID claims we initially feared, relating to guests alleging they caught COVID on property,” Duff said. “Some of this is because it’s difficult to prove you caught COVID on property as opposed to any other experiences. Some states have added additional protections and civil immunities, so in the eyes of the law, a property or business is immune to liability around COVID, but each state’s language and statute is different.

“For most clients who have gone to great efforts to establish protocols and practices and provide assurances that their environment is safe and clean, it’s a bit of a contradiction when you then tell the guests that, despite everything you told them about how clean this is, if they contract COVID the hotel is not responsible, so many clients haven’t pursued a general COVID release. What many have done is look at existing waivers used on property such as spa releases, activity waivers, pool, etc. In those instances, it’s not difficult to add language that talks about contraction of COVID or similar illnesses.”

HSMAI Customer Insight: Travel Momentum Building As Safety Remains Important | Longwoods International

As several key Travel Sentiment Indicators continue to trend at pandemic high positive levels, many American travelers are still concerned about safety, and now also the cost of travel, yet they are divided on the notion of proof of vaccination requirements for travel (e.g. travel passports), reports Amir Eylon, President & CEO, Longwoods International. Here are additional insights prepared for HSMAI:


See the Full Report: COVID-19 Travel Sentiment Study – Wave 37: U.S. Travel Momentum Building, As Safety Remains Important

HSMAI Customer Insight: Expect An Onslaught Of Travelers Soon | Fuel

According to their latest consumer research, Fuel says, “We’ve already seen a giant boom in some markets over the last 6 weeks of people booking hotel rooms. Some properties are seeing more than double the revenue booked online compared to 2019. The data in this survey shows that people are ready NOW to research, book, and travel in the very near future. ” Hear insights into the finding prepared for HSMAI by Melissa Kavanaugh, Fuel’s Director of Analytics.

HSMAI Customer Insight: Travelers Both Optimistic and Cautious | Longwoods International

According to the latest Longwoods International tracking study of American travelers, 88% of them now have travel plans in the next six months, the highest level in more than a year.  However, less than a third of them are likely to visit a tourism attraction or business which does not have clear COVID safety protocols, such as mask requirements and social distancing, in place. “It’s obvious from the data that Americans are ready to travel again, but only if they believe they can do safely,” said Amir Eylon, President and CEO of Longwoods International. Hear his observations for HSMAI:


Full Report: COVID-19 Travel Sentiment Study – Wave 34: Travelers Both Optimistic and Cautious