2021 Road Trips – Why We’ll Hop in the Car for Most Travel This Year
Travel is back, apparently. To some, it never left, and to others, it’s still worth waiting for. We’re somewhere in the middle. With the natural increase in travel for many due to the summer months, pile on a tons more who’ve been itching to travel since early 2020. I’ve admittedly gotten swept up in the planning a bit, actually scouting out possible flights for family trips in the future. However, we’re mostly refraining from such hasty plans – we’re primarily planning 2021 road trips. So why will we continue opting for the car over planes for now? Let me explain.
As I’ve described previously, we had to call a time out on visiting family and friends since early 2020 due to the pandemic. Our travel priorities now revolve around catching up with those folks rather than visiting exotic locales. Those destinations will be around much longer than our family and friends will. We can’t get the time back from last year, but the least we can do is to make up for it with the family and friends we cherish most. For us, we can easily travel to most of those people without hopping on a plane.
Steering Clear of Revenge Travel
Almost a year ago, the Washington Post described “revenge travel”, the pent-up demand that many have for travel. Indeed, this novel term a year ago has become more common since. A seemingly higher proportion of individuals are excited to get out there ASAP. On top of that, some of these individuals are edgier than usual. Many of us, have seen the videos of recent behavior on planes. I understand that these terrible events are most likely related to a very small portion of overall travelers. Perception is reality for me here, though. My family and I aren’t huge fans of domestic air travel, anyway, and getting on a plane now during the pandemic (yes, we’re still in it) with angrier than usual individuals isn’t our idea of family fun. For now, we’ll instead opt for the car and the receiving end of a more familiar but avoidable unpleasantness, road rage.
We enjoy flexibility during our travel in normal times, but we’ve placed even higher priority on it during the pandemic. Thankfully, pandemic trends are headed in the right direction, but we know we aren’t out of the woods yet. Travel industry volatility and bad news for customers is still potentially around the corner, in my view. I’ve heard multiple horror stories recently of involuntary, significant flight changes that have substantially and negatively impacted individuals’ plans. I’ve chosen to remove that uncertainty with the air transit portion, at least. I’d rather mitigate against traffic jams.
Allowing More Time for Travel Industry Normalization
While entities such as airlines, hotels, and car rental companies are starting to catch up, we’re nowhere near the pre-pandemic normal for these services and more. Will they ever get back to that type of normal? I don’t know, but I’ll surely give them more time now to get their acts together. Mark predicted and was quite prophetic on a few of these points back in March. The simple uncertainty of a car rental at a potential travel destination gives me pause. Waiting multiple hours to book awards? No thanks, I’m good. One of our favorite travel destinations, Disney World, continues to adjust its policies. By simply postponing, we set up our next trip for a higher likelihood of success. I totally understand that many have legitimate reasons for big travel ASAP, but the near term risks don’t outweigh the gains for us.
2021 Road Trips Are Easy Wins
Since we largely took a big travel time out during the pandemic to this point, I’m looking for us to get back in the travel game with a few easy wins. Instead of swinging for the fences, we’re fine hitting a few singles and doubles. And we can do that via car. Hell, just using up all of our hotel free night certificate stockpile will be a cause for celebration.
No doubt, my family and I will need to adjust back to our pre-pandemic travel lifestyle. We’d rather gradually ease back in rather than taking on a big travel shock to the system immediately.
2021 Road Trips – Conclusion
We all have our own individual travel styles that are subject to tweaking during the pandemic. Taking on more road trips is just the latest iteration for us. The contentment of that travel while we also adjust to local everyday routines returning to normal is enough for us currently. Bravo to all of you who have chased your travel dreams and stayed curious as we progress into this next period of the pandemic. Regardless where or how you go, I wish you all good health, safe travels, and new levels of discovery!