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  • Writer's picturePaul Whitbeck

Revenge Travel

Over-hyped or or real issue? And the never-ending need to educate the notion of "Responsible Travel."

As America prepares itself for the outset of Summer, the return of travel, in full-swing, the travel industry continues to hear the use of a new buzzword that comes with interesting implications. Revenge Travel. It's the talk of the industry and coming out of a pandemic, the "responsible travel" reality check for managing destination travel, not just marketing it. Not an industry related webinar, zoom call or dare-i-say-it, live travel industry conference goes by without someone bringing the concerns or potential implications over "Revenge Travel".

At its core, revenge travel is a good thing. American travelers telling COVID-19 "no more" and as case rates drop, vaccinations rates increase and restrictions slowly disappear, travelers in droves are...well...traveling. Visiting, reunion-ing, marrying and adventuring in huge numbers. Memorial Day Weekend alone is looking at increases of 60% or more. This is a good thing.

What's not a good thing is when all that pent up demand leads to a willingness to throw responsibility, accountability and simple human respect out the window. Traveling with no regard for rules, regulations and in some instances laws, many of which were in place long before COVID was even a household term. Revenge Travel takes on a whole new perspective, when travelers feel they have the right, to simply do whatever they want, because they were held back from travel fo so long.

Incidences of traveler aggression toward Flight attendants, Hotel Desk agents, Restaurantures as well as other travel and service sectors all seem to be on the rise.

And we can't just look at these as one off incidences. Promoting travel; more importantly responsible travel is crucial. Regardless of the travel destination or travel experience. Don't be fooled into thinking it can't happen in your destination.

Just take a look at what happened on the 18th Hole at the 103rd PGA Championship. Pent up celebratory feelings spun out of control, over a golf tournament.

As an industry, we will recover. Travel is too important for both the emotional well being of our citizenry and the economic life blood of so many of our communities. The idea of "Revenge Travel" certainly implies that 2021 will see tremendous recovery. But we must work as an industry to educate visitors, while at the same time welcoming them back.


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