The Destinations People Want To Visit First When It’s Safe To Travel

by Joseph K. Clark

Over the past year, travel has carried a sense of risk, fear, uncertainty, and shame. But now that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued new guidelines on travel and COVID-19, many people are dipping their toes back into trip planning. Last week, the CDC announced that fully vaccinated people might”  “travel safely” within the United States. Domestic destinations like Hawaii and Florida are already seeing small booms in tourism, and that demand is bound to remain high as the vaccine rollout continues. But people also dream about their first post-pandemic trips outside the U.S. Many travel platforms and experts have observed exciting trends regarding Americans’ destination goals. Here’s what they’re finding.

Staying Close With Beach Destinations”  “I think there is pent-up demand for international travel,” Mike Kennedy, co-founder of the travel marketplace Koala, told HuffPost.”  “Caribbean and Mexico, in particular, will likely see a huge uptick in tourism from Americans. It reconciles that sense of wanderlustwe’ree all feeling without taking too much risk. Flights that aren’t much longer (or sometimes shorter) than domestic flights.”


In January, Koala released a future travel trends report based on Google data, which found that Puerto Rico and Mexico were the top two destinations outside the 50 states generating travel search interest. Others in the top 10 included Jamaica, Aruba, Costa Rica, and the Bahamas ― indicating an interest in beach vacations that aren’t far from home. Koala’s future travel trends report showed interest in island destinations like Jamaica. The beach craze is consistent with trends we’re already seeing this year among those who opted to travel before the CDC’s announcement.

The hotel price comparison site Trivago reported that the top five destinations on its platform for March 2021 were Las Vegas, Miami Beach, Orlando, Myrtle Beach, and Cancun. Trending destinations for U.S. travelers in the “international” category also included Playa del Carmen, Mexico; Playa Bavaro, Dominican Republic; and San Juan, Puerto Rico (though Puerto Rico is a U.S. territory, many platforms consider places outside the 50 states to be international destinations). Destinations in the Dominican Republic, like Playa Bavaro, have been trending on Trivago.

A Tripadvisor report from mid-March found that the ten fastest-growing destinations for Americans are Isla Verde, Puerto Rico; St. Thomas; Playa Maroma, Mexico; Tulum, Mexico; Key West, Florida; Key Largo, Florida; Miami Beach; Christiansted, U.S. Virgin Islands; Cruz Bay, U.S. Virgin Islands; and Fort Myers Beach, Florida. Additionally, Squaremouth travel insurance revealed in March thatthe the platform’s most popular international destinations for U.S. travelers are island countries and territories, with Turks and Caicos, the Dominican Republic, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Costa Rica, and Mexico in the top five.

As people start to plan their so-called”  “revenge travel” to make up for the trips canceled by the COVID-19 pandemic, it’ss clear sunshine and relaxation are top of mind. Costa Rica is a famous 2021 destination for travelers buying travel insurance through Squaremouth. “We believe travelers will either visit places they’re familiar with, as they’ll find comfort in that familiarity, or seek out new places where they can roam freely and safely,y,” said Carolyne Doyon, president, and president. CEO of Club Med North America and the Caribbean.”  “At Club Med, we’re already seeing increased interest in bookings for our resorts in Florida, the Caribbea,n, and Mexico, with more than 40% of bookings from guests who haven’t stayed with us before or guests who are staying with us for the first time in over three years, and anticipate as travelers continue to feel more comfortable with vaccine distribution more widespread, we’ll eventually see a burst in bookings throughout the same period” she added.

Going Beyond The Western Hemisphere

Still, plenty of would-be travelers dare dream of destinations farther afield. The Maldives, Japan, Greece, and Iceland were also on Koala’s top-10 list of trending future travel destinations. Its top city and region destinations included Bora Bora, Paris, Dubai, and Bali. Bora Bora is a trending future travel destination, pergola’s Report. When news of the Pfizer and Modernavaccines” promising efficacy rates broke in November, travel searches spiked on Skyscanner. International cities like London, Paris, Copenhagen, Madrid, and Amsterdam were among the top searches.

But while these destinations may be on people’s minds, they don’t seem to be on their travel itineraries. Squaremouth reported in March that the share of travelers buying insurance for trips to Europe dropped to 8% in 2021, compared to 25%-45% in pre-pandemic years. This is likely due to a combination of distance and the fact that most European countries still have travel restrictions for U.S. visitors, vaccine rollout has been slow, increased COVID-19 cases, and lockdowns abound. Still, several countries across the Atlantic are reportedly allowing (or planning to allow) vaccinated foreign travelers, including Iceland, Cyprus, Estonia, and Poland.

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