Postpone, don’t cancel!
Yes, your dreams of a European summer have been dashed; however, think twice before you ask for a refund.
With flights cancelled, hotels empty and tightened border controls, The World Travel and Tourism Council [WTTC] says up to 50 million jobs could be lost because of the pandemic.
While he acknowledges it’s imperative we do all we can to stem the spread of COVID-19, Chris Sedgwick, chief operating officer of TFE Hotels, urges travellers to take their holidays in the future for the sake of the crippled industry.
“There’s no doubt that times are incredibly tough right now, but our message to the travelling public is this: if you can, please don’t cancel your travel plans,” he told WHO.
“Postpone your stay and wait for better times. Now, more than ever, tourism operators and our employees around the country need your long-term support to get us back on track and to ensure the industry recovers rapidly from the impact of COVID-19.”
Not only will your tourist dollars be greatly appreciated by operators post-CVOID-19, there’s also likely to be big discounts to snap up on hotels and flights.
Write a bucket list
Your travel dreams may have been grounded for now but that doesn’t mean you can’t get inspired and plan out your future trips.
Spend the self-isolation period researching destinations you’re curious about and actually writing down your bucket list.
Neuroscience studies have proven people who write and vividly describe their goals are between 1.2 and 1.4 times more likely to fulfil them – so put a pen to paper!
There are so many wonderful books and films to inspire travellers, and of course Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube are all great sources of travel inspiration and ways to find under-the-radar places.
Most of us have never spent so much time at home so we may as well use it wisely.
Gwyneth Paltrow may have faced backlash for suggesting people learn a language while quarantined but we have to admit, this really is the perfect opportunity to finally learn French – or perfect our pronunciation - for the next overseas trip.
There are many free language-learning apps available, such as Duolingo, so you’ll be able to order a meal in Spain without ending up red-faced and make genuine connections with the locals on your next adventure.
Podcasts are also a way to learn more about the destinations you’ll visit in the future, and the people you’ll meet.
Try Ben Groundwater’s Flight of Fancy or our favourite, Women Who Travel, hosted by Conde Nast Traveler’s Meredith Carey and Lale Arikoglu.
It may be some time away, but it's likely that domestic non-essential travel bans will be lifted first so consider taking a holiday in your own backyard.
In January, in a bid to assist communities devastated by the bushfires, Tourism Australia launched its Holiday At Home campaign to encourage Australians to plan and book a domestic holiday and share their experiences online.
When bans are lifted, travellers are encouraged to take a road trip, book a weekend away or tick off that bucket list Aussie adventure you’ve always dreamed about to support our tourism industry, which certainly needs some love right now.
Take a virtual tour
It may not be the same as experiencing some of the world’s best attractions, museums, natural wonders and musical performances in person but given it could be some time before we can do that, take a virtual tour instead.
The Louvre in Paris has online tours of the museum’s exhibition rooms, galleries and architecture, while nature lovers can get their fix by checking out Virtual Yosemite, which instantly transports viewers to the famed national park in California’s Sierra Nevada.
In a world first, Haven Bali Retreat has also launched its first virtual retreat, Escape @ Home.
Wellness entrepreneur Janine Hall aims to bring her exclusive award-winning Bali program straight to guests’ homes in a bid to transform them from the inside out.
Escape Haven's virtual six-week program, which includes yoga, workouts, recipes and wellness tips and tools, starts on April 27.