While the corona virus is sweeping the world, travel companies are doing all they can to survive. Customers that booked, have canceled or postponed and even after almost 5 months of crisis its still very uncertain for most companies when they can operate again and for who.
While in the initial phase comforting, informing about bookings and help to get travelers back to their country we are now in a phase that people slowly start searching for possibilities of their next holiday again.
The questions are now slowly changing into which destinations are open, what are the rules in those destinations, how would my holiday look like with social distance & health measures in place. Your role is to help travelers with their questions about your destination and your operations and tours.
Have a travel advice or covid 19 page
To help your audience and customers it's a good idea to have a covid 19 page on your website where you try to answer the questions of people from your niche towards travelling to your destination(s).
Main Concerns Travelers
- Catching or spreading COVID-19;
- Worried there will be restrictions to travel freely through a destination.
- Worried that a lot of attractions and facilities are closed and that you can not fully enjoy a destination.
Criteria Travelers will look at to travel after covid-19
- Drop of number of cases in their own country
- Drop of number of cases in transit country
- Drop of number of cases in country of destination
- Travel Advisories of Governments
- Restriction policies of country of destination
- Quarantine and border control policies
- Possibility to experience the destination, opening of restaurants, attractions hotels, national parks etc
The communication on your website and social media channels needs to give an answer to the questions above.
Use trusted sources to answer these questions, share status reports of your DMO and ministries. Summarize the latest rules and regulations from the government.
But you also need to inform about your own company.
Questions Travelers have about your company
- Are you open ?
- Closed ?
- Till when ?
- From when do you take bookings ?
- What are you doing about safety once you re-open ?
Make it easy for clients to get into contact with you if they have more questions and use these questions to extend your faq.
Communication on your social media channels
On your social media channels you have the change to interact with your audience. Here you can show empathy and learn about the situation of your clients : how are they surviving ? Check out the posts of your biggest fans, react on their posts now and then. Be active in communities about the niche you are working in. Try to actively build on a community, people are looking for interaction, socialising which you could facilitate by being part or even managing a community around your travel niche.
Topics to share on social media
- Share what you do to keep travelers that are planning to book with you healthy
- Reshare posts with positive news of people in your country or area
- Start using twitter to spread your news updates about lifting of travel restrictions or new health measures.
- Send regular updates to your previous clients
- Tell how you and staff are doing (with strength)
- Tell how communities you are working with are doing, especially previous clients are interested in how people they visited are doing and are maybe even looking for ways to help.
- Make a bond with travelers connect with them by showing how your destination is coping with covid 19, travelers might wonder how communities they visited are doing, if you can connect them virtually, this might give them another reason to come back and see how your destination is doing after the crisis settled.
Are you open ? From when ?
Open Tickets Tours - Offer your tours with an open ticket, give value add ones if they pay something in advance.
- Offer tours with open ticket, but pre payment of 25% to keep a cash flow - > Make sure these tours are super exclusive and good. / https://pay-it-forward.co.uk/
Temporary flexible Booking Conditions
Did you change your booking conditions for example easy cancelation ? Communicate this not only on your product pages but also on your covid 19 travel alert page. A good example is the Peace of Mind policy of Monograms.
Communicate your health measures
- Cleaning - what kind of cleaning measures did you, the country and your suppliers put in place.
- Social Distancing - what do you, the destination and your suppliers do to ensure social distancing
- Training - what did you and your suppliers do to train your staff, to keep travellers healthy
- Contactless Services - what kind of contactless services did you or your suppliers installed
- Contactless payments
- Contactless food delivery
- Food during the trip - What do you and your suppliers do for food safety and the way food is served.
What is happening ?
Create positive news - new stuff, csr initiatives, good news from your destination and it's communities. Create press releases, blogs and travel news distributors still need news. People tend to give more value to bad then to good news, so try to send positive stories.
- Stay Visible, Stay Connected, Engage online
Informing your B2B Partners
Make sure your b2b partners can sooth their clients, have easy to share information about the situation in your destination.