India may be gradually unlocking, but the recovery of travel, and future of millions of people associated with the tourism industry, is still uncertain. As social distancing turns out to be the way to go for many years to come, travel businesses must adapt now for tomorrow.
A recent survey by Nasscom indicated the impact of COVID-19 on India's startup ecosystem and found out that nearly 70 per cent of the startups will only be able to last for around three months. Looking at how badly the travel industry has been impacted, many of these startups are likely to be a travel startups.
"Stepping ahead into an uncertain future, the travel startup ecosystem is preparing for the new era of travel where everything will be changed and brand-new. Businesses will need to be prepared today for tomorrow's travellers, and innovation is truly the need of the hour in order to meet the standard needs of quality travel. We cannot say for sure when it will all re-start but we need to be prepared for the future of travelling. Many travel startups are trying to bring changes into their business models and rethinking the way they used to function," Pritesh Khare, CEO, India Voyage, a travel startup said.
He added that these changes are permanent only till the vaccine arrives. "We might also see hike in the prices of accommodation, food, transportation because of the market gap and the COVID security innovations and precautions."
Here is how he thinks the industry will change post the containment of the virus:
Local travel over international travel: In future people might only want to travel local keeping in mind its shorter distance hence making it a safer choice for them. In fact even the aviation industry would consider offering a different kind of seat choices which might be limited than what it used to be pre-COVID. International travel will be more expensive, hence people will choose to travel local.
Rural tourism over cities: In the post-Corona world the travel is going to take a very unusual turn. Businesses that are into local stays, eco stays, village tours, skill-based tours and educational tours might see a good rise in future as people will be travelling with a desire to live sustainable and simple.
Road trips over local transport: Road trips across the nation will be a safer option to take-up. Private taxis and mechanics' businesses will see a rise as public transport is going to be very challenging in the future and people might want to avoid it for a healthy living. (IANS)