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What can you expect when you travel this summer?

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Given the events of the past few months, chances are good that you’ll meet someone who has canceled their summer trip to a remote location and exchanged it for an adventure with a motorhome (just look at country singer Miranda Lambert). Or maybe take a trip to visit your family, camp in a state park, or just stay.

What can you expect when you travel this summer?
What can you expect when you travel this summer?

After months of stress and economic uncertainty, Americans and many people around the world still want a normal look for their summer, and that means many are trying to find a way to travel safely. Since March United States Travel Association and MMGY Travel Intelligence They’ve studied how Americans think about travel, and while most don’t plan to travel for business or pleasure in the next six months, MMGY’s June report says 40% will. 67% of these travelers plan to do this by car, more than twice as many as those who want to fly. And those who fly say that they feel safer nationally.

According to the survey, Americans have become safer on overnight trips since March, and this rise of course coincides with the reopening of many hotels and restaurants for the first time in months.

A look at how entrepreneurs and customers behave in American industry gives us an understanding of what could happen in the rest of the world.

When you travel this summer, what do hotels look like and what are they doing to prepare for guests? The entrepreneur spoke to four hotel industry experts to find out what travelers should expect.

The return Car rides

The hotel is located on the east coast of Maryland in a small town called St. Michael the Perry Cabin Inn It has long been a destination for residents of Washington, DC, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and even New York. (The picturesque waterfront inn was the location for the wedding in Wedding crashers).

Photo: Inn in Perry Cabin

After Michael Hoffmann, managing director of Inn at Perry Cabin, fired most of the employees in March to apply for unemployment benefits, he looked for properties in Asia and Europe that were challenging to find a way to go. “We scanned the horizon and said okay what is it? How does it work and how do you figure out how to navigate reefs and shoals as you navigate to the next chapter in business? Hoffmann says.” We found out very quickly that there is nothing solid that I can trust. There were many gray areas and many more questions than answers. “

The hotel closed completely and then slowly started doing small things: for example, offering snacks from its restaurants and selling boxes of spa kits at home. At the beginning of June, 40 of the 78 rooms were reopened from Thursday to Monday, and in mid-June this capacity was increased to 60 rooms per weekend. Mouth guards are required in every building, but the hotel has lost only one guest due to this rule.

Hoffmann says that since it opened, 96 percent of the guests have come in less than four and a half hours and 99 percent have entered. In mid-June, Hoffmann said he rejected the deal. “I hate to do this, but I also send a very clear message that we are here not only to make money but also to make sure we are safe.”

“Second tier” cities could increase popularity among travelers

If you arrive by car, smaller cities that are only a short drive away will suddenly become infinitely more attractive than remote cities or coastal towns. Kevin Robinson and Mario Tricoci thought about it when they worked on a hotel project in Chicago over a decade ago and drove to nearby cities for business or children’s sports tournaments. They found the lack of independent hotel options and founded Aparium Hotels Manage and develop hyperlocal boutique properties in so-called “second tier” cities such as Minneapolis, Detroit and Kansas City.

Photo: Aparium Hotels

“When Mario and I started the company, people made it difficult for us. “Didn’t you know Detroit just filed for bankruptcy?” Minneapolis? Don’t you know that it freezes over there in winter? “And we really don’t hear much anymore. These markets are held more often,” says Robinson.

They spent months exploring independent cafes, breweries, local farms, and family businesses, and in each of these markets, before opening, they looked for products that would become even more important as they slowly reopen their existing properties and open new ones for the rest. of the year. “We strive to celebrate entrepreneurs, especially at a time like this,” says Tricoci. “As a result of the pandemic, many small businesses are not returning, and as your small platform, we believe that celebrating these small businesses and farmers is paramount.” We’re getting closer now to make sure they know, “Hey, we’ll be back.”

People still want to celebrate

Montage Hotels, Laguna Beach, Calif., Which operates hotels and residences in the United States and Mexico, is slowly reopening its properties as states lift the restrictions on business operations. Palmetto Bluff opened in South Carolina in early June, and doors opened slowly in Los Cabos, Laguna Beach, and Deer Valley as the month progressed. Kapalua Bay on Maui will not be reopened until Hawaii removes visitor restrictions.

Photo: Montage Hotels

However, President and Chief Operating Officer Jason Herthel was pleasantly surprised by the number of vacation travelers making reservations, especially in his easily accessible accommodations such as Palmetto Bluff and Deer Valley. More and more travelers are booking suites and villas for which they don’t have to pass a main building. “Our customers experience this time in which they no longer travel, can be with their loved ones and celebrate important events, be it a wedding or an anniversary,” he says. “My initial point, based on conversations I had with guests and our team, is that our customer says: I may have taken my travel options for granted before, and this episode is important to me how much I appreciate it. So I’m going to travel because I realize how valuable it is and I want to celebrate life. “

At the moment, anyone making a reservation at an assembly facility needs to review what they call a “commitment to safety,” which details the safety and hygiene measures that guests can expect at the facility. You will also be informed that when booking a spa appointment you can expect a temperature measurement, for example, and that employees wear additional protective equipment such as shields, masks and gloves.

Montage also partnered with a company called One Medical, a direct primary care company, to offer its guests 30-day membership (and still memberships for employees and their families). In this way, they can access virtual medical care even when they are not at home.

Protecting employees while keeping them busy is something that each of these hoteliers emphasizes as a priority. “We want the hotel to be a safe haven amidst everything that’s going on around us,” says Hoffmann from Inn at Perry Cabin. “We have to protect everyone in the hotel: our employees first, our guests second and last but not least the business, because if it didn’t exist we wouldn’t have any employees or guests.”

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