Demand for safety is highest among Indian travellers, of the five countries – UK, US, Australia and New Zealand

The majority of travellers in India are now ready to consider booking domestic and international trips, but only if airlines, airports, hotels and car rental companies collectively implement ten different safety measures throughout their journey, which includes fully flexible or refundable flight tickets. Furthermore, demand for almost every safety measure is highest in India, of the five countries surveyed. This is according to the results of new independent research released today by Travelport, a leading technology company serving the global travel industry.

The results of the study are based on a survey of 5,000 travelers across India, the United States, United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand, as well as in-depth interviews with 29 leading travel suppliers. The study found that at all parts of the travel journey, it was deemed critical to have social distancing rules, mandatory use of face masks, and ready access to sanitizing gel or wipes, face masks and gloves. The study also revealed, however, that additional measures still need to be implemented by airlines, airports, hotels and car rental companies to fully restore consumer confidence.

The table below captures the ten separate safety measures participants of the study said they need to know have been adopted by airports, airlines, hotels and car rental companies for those travelers to consider domestic and international travel. The percentage figures represent the number of travelers that said they will not travel unless the respective safety measure is in place.

Similar measures (e.g. enhanced cleaning and disinfection) have been grouped together for the purpose of this table. Detailed information on the specific safety measures participants deemed critical at airports, airlines, hotels and car rentals can be found in Travelport Guide to Travel Recovery report.

Martin Herbert, Senior Commercial Director  Operators at Travelport said, “The travel industry has introduced numerous initiatives to support a safe and responsible recovery of travel over the last few months. This research demonstrates just how important such measures are to ensure travellers feel safe. The industry now needs to ensure it is not only putting these measures in place consistently across the entire travel journey, but also communicating them effectively to travellers across the various channels and merchandising  technologies available to them.

Derek Sadubin, Managing Director at CAPA  Centre for Aviation, added, “Safety and flexibility are understandably front of mind for travellers right now. The travel industry recognizes and respects this, and what’s encouraging, is that many suppliers, such as airlines, have already implemented the measures travellers say they need to book a domestic or international trip  but we still have a long way to go. Collaboration and communication are now key to restoring traveller confidence and securing a strong and responsible industry recovery.”

Sandeep Dwivedi, Chief Operating Officer at InterGlobe Technology Quotient, said: Travellers safety and consistent communication of respective safety measures, including frequent modifications, is of utmost importance to restore confidence in travel. Travelport’s latest study is a commendable step in this direction, one that will help travel agents understand ongoing procedures and identify opportunities to offer better experience to the end traveller.”

The full results of both the quantitative and qualitative components of the research are captured in the Travelport Recovery report. These also reveal that travellers in India are much more likely to book through a travel agent than before the COVID-19 crisis, with half (50%, compared to 33% globally) of all travellers anticipating an increase in their use of travel agent services. Globally, this trend was particularly evident among millennials (44%). Overall, the three-quarters of travellers in India (73%, compared to 65% globally) who claimed this, said it’s because they feel travel agents are best placed to provide them with the latest travel safety information

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