Discussing Ireland travel predictions for the rest of 2020 and into 2021 with 3 of my favorite Ireland tourism experts: Tina O'Dwyer, Pól Ó Conghaile, and Stephanie Chastain.
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Ireland Travel Predictions
My 3 Special Guests
Tina O'Dwyer from County Clare. Owner of The Tourism Space, which offers training and professional development for Irish tourism businesses.
Pol O'Conghaile, travel editor for the Irish Independent and award winning travel writer.
Stephanie Chastain, publisher and vacation coach at Infinite Ireland.
None of us have a crystal ball… these are just our impressions, gut feelings, and some news that is trickling in as the days go by.
If you would rather watch….
Our Lockdown Experiences
In Ireland and the US
Ireland Lockdown is Set to ‘Loosen' May 5
Lockdown won't ‘end' on the 5th. Restrictions may lift with a gentle easing, the 2km radius may be relaxed, and some shops may reopen.
What if You Have Travel Planned this Summer?
Tour companies and airlines have been cancelling tours and flights.
General consensus is that spring and summer is out of question and fall is still ‘up in the air'.
Rescheduling with Irish accommodations has been a positive experience over all, though disappointing for tourists as well as the businesses.
How are the Tourism Businesses Doing?
The emotional ride is as tough as the practical ride.
Most are focusing on the fundamentals of their businesses and planning how they will reopen when restrictions are lifted. How do you offer the warm Irish welcome from a distance?
Daily News Brings New Shocking Headlines
No summer festivals. No Tidy Towns. Pubs may not reopen until 2021.
These headlines can help people plan the next months and what they may look like.
Tourism recover will start ultra-locally, cautiously. Then regionally, with national travel following.
International tourism will follow that, slowly.
Where Will Tourists Visit When They Return?
People will be more intentional with their travels. More value over volume.
Visitor attitudes may change. But the communities will change, as well.
What About Flights to Ireland?
Heavy discounts will be prevalent when flights resume. Short flights will recover first; long haul flights will take longer. New rules will be put in place and some travelers may have a reluctance to fly.
Airlines will work hard to reassure passengers of the safety of flying.
International travel to Ireland will likely not recover this year.
Consumer feelings are going to play a big part in willingness to travel.
How Will Irish Hospitality Businesses Handle Visitors?
Hotels and pubs will be most disadvantaged as they require a certain amount of numbers to operate.
Tours and attractions will have the space and more ease for social distancing though will need more staff to maintain.
What Will Tourism Look Like as We Head into 2021?
Expect ‘fits and starts' and not a linear progression. Pre-pandemic levels of travel may not return for up to 3 years.
Tourism has been resilient. Rebooting, strong marketing may bring back Irish tourism numbers in 4-5 years.
Flight cost predictions for 2021: less capacity, longer turn around times on flights, and prices rising with demand.
Don't expect huge price breaks at luxury end properties. Expect properties to add value as opposed to lowering prices.
Trust will play a huge part in bookings.
Where in Ireland Will You Visit When We Can Travel Again?
Tina – after enjoying her home county of Clare she plans to visit Sligo
Sligo Travel Tips
Pol – a Wexford walk
Stephanie – Waterford and the Waterford Greenway