Incidence values are also rising in holiday destinations. Should you plan your annual vacation now? What a tourism researcher says about this and what you should definitely pay attention to.
Once the year began, many people in the area took over a love of wanderlust – especially since vacation planning for work often had to take place until the end of January. However, anyone planning to travel in times of Corona should prepare for the challenges. We provide an overview of what to consider.
What advice do the experts give on planning your vacation in 2022?
Munich tourism researcher Markus Pillmayer says a lot of spontaneity and flexibility is needed when booking again this year: “The state of a travel destination can change overnight.” Therefore, vacationers are advised to plan carefully and always monitor the situation. As a first step, those who want to go on vacation should know where they want to go and whether they can get there with their vaccination status. “The central question is: Can I get to the destination country?” In the second step, you should consider: What are the locally applicable rules, and how can I adapt my vacation to them? The third central question, according to Belmayer: “How well will I return, how will I go and how does the employer handle the quarantine if necessary?”
Are there particularly popular travel trends this year?
Belmayer postulates that long-distance travel will be just as difficult to plan as last year: “The trend is strongly for other European countries, although here also one has to speculate on countries that are not risky areas at the time of travel.” In Germany also for families again a good option. In the holidays You’ll do it in holiday hot spots like this Alps feel. There is a strong rush to get fewer accommodations, because some guest companies have given up during the pandemic, and for some it is more profitable to register a short-term business for a few months rather than open it permanently.
How can you avoid spending your free time in the midst of a large influx of vacationers?
Tourism researcher Belmayer recommends planning holidays and excursions more cycle-resistant than before: “I can only advise against going to hotspots on public holidays or long weekends. Even on vacation, it is better to get to famous places during the week. “If you want to avoid highway traffic chaos, long searches for a parking space at your travel destination and a mass rush to attractions, you should also include alternative destinations in your planning. Not just the mountains or the coast, but all of Germany is a great travel destination: “You can also have nice days in Westerwald or in Sauerland. It’s not always the things to see around the Alps and mountain lakes that make a perfect vacation.” In other places in particular, the price level is sometimes more relaxed.
Are early bird cuts still worthwhile in times of the coronavirus pandemic?
Julia Zeller, an expert in travel law at the Bavarian Consumer Center, recommends: Consumers should take a close look at early bird discounts. “Is it really a good price – or is the tariff increased up front and the discount only looks cheap, but is actually an advertising ploy?” Another problem with early booking is that the corona situation can change dramatically and travel conditions or rules – at a destination that are hard to predict in advance.
Read also about this
How about last minute deals this summer?
Travel law expert Zeller says the advantage of trips planned at short notice is that vacationers can better assess the situation at the site. “If I book only a week in advance, there is a greater chance that the number of cases and provisions I expect when planning will remain the same.” However, it cannot be said for sure whether a last minute decision is cheaper than regular booking say more after all, it is now a new market in the corona pandemic, so it could also become more expensive in the short term due to increased demand.
What should vacationers take into account in the event of a cancellation related to Corona?
Basically, if contracting partners like airlines or accommodation providers cancel the trip, I’ll get my money back as a vacationer. This applies regardless of a single travel or package deal, Zeller explains: “If I cancel my flight or hotel on a single booking, I usually have to pay for the costs and refund the taxes and fees at most.” So the question with every flight or train booking is: “Am I a bargain hunter, would I rather take the savings ticket and take a little risk with it? Or am I one of the more cautious and pay a little for a flexi ticket?” This can usually be changed or canceled ahead of time. Short of the start of the trip.
Are package travelers generally better off canceling?
For a long time it has been the case that anyone choosing a package vacation can opt out of it until recently during the pandemic without having to pay a cancellation fee, provided there is a travel warning from the Federal Foreign Office. But vacationers shouldn’t feel a false sense of security, says travel law expert Zeller: “The epidemic has been going on for two years and everyone is aware of the potential restrictions.” So it remains to be seen whether the travel warning will continue to be an exceptional reason for canceling the cancellation fee or whether travelers are required to pay a contractually agreed amount.
Can I expect an alternative flight if the tour operator cancels due to Corona?
Many service providers try to offer their customers an alternative destination in case the flight is cancelled. Lawyer Zeller says vacationers aren’t entitled to it: “Anyone currently planning a vacation should always keep in mind: We’re in an epidemic and no one knows exactly what’s coming.” Therefore, travelers should expect that the vacation cannot take place as planned or even at all. “When in doubt, accept spending your free time at home.”