Travellers more likely to fly once vaccinated but quarantines are still a deterrent, survey shows

About 84% per cent of travellers said they would not fly if there were a chance of quarantine at the destination country

Travellers are keen to board flights once again after they have been vaccinated, but are frustrated with current travel restrictions including quarantines, a survey by the biggest airline industry body showed.

Some 81 per cent of respondents believe they will be more likely to travel once they take the jab, but there are headwinds to this growing travel confidence.

Eighty-four per cent said they will not fly if there is a chance of quarantine at the destination country, according to the latest passenger survey by the International Air Transport Association (Iata).

"People have not lost their taste for the freedom to fly," Alexandre de Juniac, director-general of Iata, said. "We must be ready when borders reopen."

An extensive vaccine campaign is expected to help air travel recover, boosting travellers' confidence and providing much-needed relief to the global aviation industry that has been battered by the pandemic.

Iata's latest survey found that 57 per cent expect to be travelling within two months of the pandemic being contained, an improvement from 49 per cent in the September 2020 survey.

Approximately 72 per cent want to travel to see family and friends as soon as possible, up from 63 per cent in September 2020.

A total of 4,700 interviews were conducted online in 11 markets between February 15 and 23 in countries including the UAE, the US, Canada, the UK, France, Germany, India, Australia, Chile, Japan and Singapore. The survey, commissioned by Iata and conducted by Rockland Dutton Research & Consulting, polled those who had taken a plane trip in the past 11 months.

The survey indicated that travellers are willing to use a secure mobile phone app to manage their travel health credentials.

Four out of five people polled would like to use this technology as soon as it becomes available, Iata said. They also expect that travel health credentials and the vaccine or test certificates must comply with global standards – work that is still in progress by governments.

Data security was a top concern for travellers. Some 78 per cent said they will not use an app if they are not in full control of their data, while 60 per cent will not use a travel credential app if data is stored centrally.

The industry body is touting its Iata Travel Pass as a solution to bypass such fears by users.

"While we are making good progress with numerous trials, we are still awaiting the global standards for digital testing and vaccine certificates," Mr de Juniac said.

"Only with global standards and governments accepting them can we maximise efficiency and deliver an optimum travel experience."

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