While Americans are still wary of traveling long distances during the coronavirus pandemic, some are searching for domestic travel destinations in COIVD-19 hot spots, a new report suggests.
Florida was the most-searched travel destination in the country, with California and Nevada trailing closely behind — all states with high spikes in coronavirus cases, according to a USA Today analysis of data from Trivago, a vertical for searching and booking hotels that measures hotel search volume.
Florida seemed to be the top state of interest for potential travelers, with just an 18% dip in search for June (over last June). At the beginning of April, searches for Floridian vacation spots were 95% below where they were at the same time the previous year. Consumer interest in travel to the Sunshine State also seemed to be timed around Disney World’s reopening in July.
However, with spiking coronavirus cases surging in multiple southern states, Disney World recently announced that it would be reducing its operating hours in September as a result of fewer expected guests. The popular Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom parks will also open an hour later and close an hour earlier than initially planned. A separate report found that parents were not ready to bring their kids back to theme parks like Disney World, Disneyland and others.
PARENTS NOT READY TO BRING THEIR KIDS BACK TO DISNEYLAND, DISNEY WORLD AND OTHER THEME PARKS: REPORT
In Nevada, travel interest surged in May and June as casinos reopened following a three-month closure in early June. Hotel searches in Vegas rebounded in mid-June (dipping only 26% below 2019 levels) up from plunging interest at the beginning of April (94 fewer searches than at the beginning of April 2019), according to Trivago data.
However, in July, hotel searches in the Silver State decreased 58% over 2019 levels at the end of July, the findings showed.
When it comes to travel, however, it may be more about when than where for most people. A related study of 2,000 travelers, conducted by the Rosen College of Hospitality Management at the University of Central Florida, and reported by USA Today, found that while more than half (around 67%) of participants said they would refrain from traveling within the next year, a whole 27% of respondents did not consider the risks of contracting the coronavirus when choosing a vacation destination.