86 per cent of GCC residents looking forward to international travel post Covid-19, survey says

Some would be ready to travel just two weeks after restrictions have been lifted

According to a survey 83 per cent of GCC residents have enjoyed thinking about travel during the coronavirus lockdown. Courtesy AllDetails

As countries gradually ease restrictions and people get used to the new normal, it looks international travel – both for leisure and business – is back on the cards for many.

The majority of GCC residents are clearly looking forward to stepping on flights once again, it seems. According to a survey conducted by AllDetails, a Dubai-based travel and tourism communications agency, 86 per cent of respondents will travel internationally post-Covid-19.

People have been writing bucket lists, and thinking about new places to visit, as well as re-visiting old favourites

The study was conducted among residents and citizens of the UAE and Saudi Arabia, in conjunction with Onest Data, to understand the sentiment people have towards travel due to the pandemic. 83 per cent of respondents said that they have enjoyed thinking about and reading up on travel during this period, although 56 per cent said they have been negatively affected by the coronavirus news.

Some respondents clarified that their travel plans depend on health security guarantees put in place. In some cases, if satisfied with the conditions, they said they would be happy to travel as soon as two to four weeks after restrictions have been lifted.

While all age groups have been enjoying thinking about travel, the survey shows that those between the ages of 21 to 34 show more restraint and are willing to wait longer than those between the ages 35 and 64, many of whom would travel within four weeks after restrictions have eased.

"The sentiment across the region is very much a resounding 'Yes!' to travel as soon as it is safe to do so. The period of lockdown has made us all realise that we were taking our freedom to travel and experience new places and cultures for granted," said Isabel Tapp, founder and chief executive of AllDetails.

“I believe we have all been writing our bucket lists and thinking about all the new places we want to visit and experience as well as re-visiting our old favourites once again. We have been dreaming about travel over the last few weeks and are all longing to start exploring again soon.”

According to the survey, 72 per cent of respondents are looking forward to travelling for leisure, with a change in scenery being the biggest reason.

Meanwhile, 80 per cent of respondents are comfortable with this international trip lasting more than a week – a good way to use all that leave that might have accumulated during the period.