Few industries have been directly hit by COVID-19 as the travel sector, which has stopped completely because most consumers heed federal advice to stay home. The US Travel Association estimates that travel losses related to the virus will result in a $ 910 billion hit for the US economy. But the industry has gone through previous crises, including the September 11 terrorist attack, the SARS virus and, more recently, the Zika virus which was born as a mosquito which costs a lot of money on Caribbean travel, said Clayton Reid, CEO of MMGY Global travel marketing company.
Speaking on the latest edition of the “Age Marketers” podcast from Ad Age, Reid said travel marketers must take this time to engage their best customers and increase brand awareness.
Many travelers have already seen past the pandemic. Hotel accommodations throughout the US are currently in single digits, Reid said, but noted that some people are still booking rooms for the next few months. An MMGY survey found that 41 percent of people had canceled their travel plans for this year – but in past crises, 50 percent had been re-ordered.
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