January 14, 2021

Adventure Travel Outfitters offer perspectives on 2021 [EP 257]

In November and December of 2020, I got some input from a few business leaders in the Adventure Travel space on when and how adventure travel will come back. I asked them their thoughts on travel as the world slows the spread of the Coronavirus, will…

Show Notes

Rick Saez
Adventure Travel Outfitters offer perspectives on 2021 [EP 257]

In November and December of 2020, I got some input from a few business leaders in the Adventure Travel space on when and how adventure travel will come back. I asked them their thoughts on travel as the world slows the spread of the Coronavirus, will it bounce back immediately, improve slowly in 2021 or continue to struggle until 2022, and why.

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Stephanie Jones of Blacks in Travel and Tourism

Andy Levine, founder of DuVine Cycling and Adventure Company

Praveen Moman from Volcano Safaris

Shannon Stowell from The Adventure Travel Trade Association




[00:00:47] Welcome back, everyone. At the end of 2020, many of us were curious as to when and how adventure travel would fair in 2021. So in November and December of 2020, I got some input from a few business leaders in the adventure travel space on when and how adventure travel will come back. I asked them to give us their thoughts on travel as the world slows the spread of the Corona virus, will it bounce back, immediately improve slowly in 2021.

[00:01:11] We’re continuing to struggle until 2022 and why? This is also unique episode in that I did not interview them. We communicated over email and the answered the question on SpeakPipe. An online tool I use, if you would like to respond and give us your thoughts, you can go to speak pipe.com/rick SAIS and record your input to the participants are Stephanie Jones of blacks and travel and tourism, annual Levine, founder of divine cycling and adventure company.

[00:01:37] Purveen moment from volcano safaris and Shannon stole from the adventure travel trade association. You can find links to their businesses and the show notes and be sure to listen for them on a future episode in 2021. To get us started here. Stephanie Jones of blacks in travel and tourism. Their mission is to ensure black travel and tourism businesses are full participants in the travel industry and to help build more diverse and inclusive destinations, there is still much uncertainty about when travel will fully resume.

[00:02:06] Although there are some people taking advantage of cheaper air and hotel prices, and the fact that resorts are not full so they can social distance while traveling. A large majority of travelers are awaiting a vaccine or for the number of COVID-19 cases to decrease consistently. Unfortunately, our nation does not have a handle on this pandemic.

[00:02:28] So hopefully a new administration will bring a new way to deal with COVID-19 so that the confidence in travel will increase among those who are looking forward to the opportunity to travel domestically and internationally. If we have a new administration in vaccine, We can only hope that travel will begin to improve slowly during the latter part of 2021, but not begin to come out on the other side of this pandemic until 2022.

[00:02:56] However, it will take some time for the industry to bounce back. Since most industry segments will need to rehire or staff up operations and ensure that the proper safety protocols are in place tested and proven to guarantee the safety of travelers and cruisers. Next up, we have Andy Levine, founder of divine cycling and adventure company.

[00:03:19] They design and lead award-winning luxury bike tours in the world’s most amazing locations. Hey, it’s Andy with divine cycling and venture company. Thank you for having me. I hope you’re all doing well, asked to make some predictions or crystal ball stuff. And sadly, I think we’re going to have some lockdowns, like we see in the UK, hopefully this will help us get more of a handle on the pandemic.

[00:03:43] I’m going to continue to ride my bicycle outside. Like we’ve seen people do really buying every bike is not available in stores now to go out and ride their bicycle. So depending on the holiday season, what’s open and where we have trips planned with, with our, with cycling and outside. So we’re optimistic.

[00:04:02] And then, you know, once the warmer weather ticks in around March, April, I think, um, we’re going to have a better handle on this. Pandemic, uh, with testing and vaccines and whatnot, and mostly exhaustion of this, people are just gonna want to really, what’s important is seeing the world, you know, connecting with people, being healthy, you know, real people can take an account of what they want out of their life.

[00:04:26] And I think, you know, being outside for me, it’s riding your bicycle and eating good food and health and wellness is a, it’s a great way to live. So being optimistic, positive, I’m looking for a better future is, is the way I’m rolling. I hope you all stay well out there. Go out and travel. And third up, we have volcano safaris, founder, Praveen moment.

[00:04:48] Volcano safaris has been at the forefront of reviving gorilla and chimpanzee tourism in Uganda and Rwanda since 1997. Well, it’s always very hard to predict what the future will be, but at the same time, uh, for those of us involved in travel and hospitality, Uh, it’s important that we do have some idea, um, of where we are going with this difficult situation.

[00:05:14] So I’d like to talk about 2020, which is of course almost coming to an end. And what I think 20, 21 and 2022 hold for us 2020 of course has been a very tough year for everyone. We’ll be happy to see the end of it. For those of us, um, whose families or friends who have been caught up in the pandemic, it’s been very tough for those affected economically.

[00:05:42] And for all of us, who’ve become isolated, um, and restricted in what we can do. And for those of us who wanted to travel and it’s been difficult to do so, and for the wildlife was protection has weakened. And most of all for the communities who live around the national parks, whose livelihoods depend on tourism and conservation.

[00:06:07] So for all of us in different corners of the globe, we really have had a challenging year, but of course, once you’re able to realize the challenging episodes in life on a normal, and we should expect them and not always expect that things will go as we want. So 2021 as we come into 2021, we, of course all want to be hopeful and optimistic about where that will go, especially with new vaccines on the way and new understanding of the virus.

[00:06:39] I think it’s also important to be realistic and practical things are still unpredictable and volatile at the moment. In many countries, the virus remains an issue lives are being affected. Jobs lost. And there are many restrictions in place. So I don’t know. I think this is going to magically disappear on January the first, first, I think from what we can see today, the 2021 until the spring will still be erratic and unpredictable and possibly go in different directions at once.

[00:07:13] At the same time, I think we will see. As the virus comes under control in certain areas, as understanding increases as vaccines come out, that some destinations will open, uh, and we will be able to plan travel more. And so things will slowly begin to open up. But at the same time, we must be ready for reversals.

[00:07:37] We must be ready to reverse, uh, our decisions on travel and be flexible and careful about where we go. But generally I’d be hopeful from the first quarter of 2021, but I certainly don’t see things being normal. Then I think as many experts have said the second half of 2021, we should see clearer, positive trends, possibilities, and greatest stabilization.

[00:08:03] And that’s what I would hope we will see. Um, so by the end of 2021, a better graph, a better trend. Mo greater confidence about what we can do and not to. And hopefully then when 2022 begins, which seems a long way away, but actually the way things are, it might come, might come quicker in our minds than we think.

[00:08:27] I would think that’s when we’ll be able to really think, okay, things are now beginning to normalize in a consistent basis. And I think now we can stop to travel. So that would be my suggestion today that we be patient during 2021, we be alert. We be ready to change our approach and our attitude. And hopefully in 2022, we’ll be into travel as we used to.

[00:08:52] In a way that we only recently had to give up. And that’s when I hope we will be able to welcome you again to the land of gorillas and chimps to the volcanoes lodges in Uganda and Rwanda. And I do hope that one day that they will come sooner rather than later. Thank you so much. And we’ll finish things off with Shannon stole from the adventure travel trade association, the global trade network supported sustainable adventure travel markets worldwide through adventure, travel news, research events, networking, and more.

[00:09:25] Hey there, Rick, I, uh, am here to chat about adventure travel and what it will look like coming back. I think that 2021 is still gonna be a choppy year. I think the domestic us market will do great. We already know that from this last year that rafting and hiking trips, a lot of lodges did really well. So I think that domestic market’s going to do wonderfully in 2021.

[00:09:53] I think the international market is still going to be really rough because not only are borders going to open and close, like Christmas lights on a Christmas tree, but also there’s going to be economic fallout. The good news for the adventure side is I do think it’s going to come back first and strong.

[00:10:09] My own personal belief is we probably won’t see real meaningful recovery till 20, 22. And hopefully by then we’ll have vaccine and rapid reliable testing to make the whole process work better. But I think it’s going to be really choppy for international travel in 2021, but adventure travel. That’s the way to go because it’s small group open air.

[00:10:34] Nature health. These are all things that are going to be important to the traveling public. So I do think our prospects are really strong, but it’ll be surviving the gap until we can get to the other side of it. Thanks so much. Well, I want to thank everybody for their ideas and thoughts on what’s going to happen in adventure.

[00:10:53] Travel in 2021 and participating in this unique episode, stay safe out there and get outside. Thank you for joining us on another episode of the outdoor biz podcast. Be sure to visit our website, the outdoor biz podcast.com where you’ll find show notes with links to everything we talked about and more.

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[00:11:30] And thanks again for listening to the outdoor biz podcast with Rick Saez.