While the COVID-19 pandemic is having a strongly negative economic impact on all areas of travel and tourism throughout the world, travel intermediaries are among the hardest hit. In 2020, under package travel law, travel intermediaries were obliged to refund in cash all cancelled trips that would have taken place in March and up to mid-May 2020.
Traditional travel intermediaries are finding it increasingly difficult to predict the demand and behaviour of travellers, which is impacting on their ability to compete effectively. Some travel operators are struggling to adapt to innovations and plan their activities and offerings accordingly.
Despite a sharp return to positive value growth at constant 2020 prices in 2021, travel intermediaries are not expected to see a return to 2019 levels of sales until 2024. In mobile travel sales to residents, stronger growth means a return to pre-pandemic levels of sales by 2022.
Online travel agencies (OTAs) are set to benefit from a further rise in so-called dynamic packaging over the forecast period. Increasingly sophisticated new technology enables OTAs to put together flight and overnight packages in real time.
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This report originates from Passport, our Travel Retail research and analysis database.
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