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Experts predicting a travel boom in 2021

Experts say precautions can be taken to keep you safe while traveling during a pandemic.
Experts say precautions can be taken to keep you safe while traveling during a pandemic.(KOLD News 13)
Published: May. 1, 2021 at 3:30 PM MDT|Updated: May. 2, 2021 at 9:17 AM MDT
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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - After a year of almost no travel at all, many people are gearing up to go on vacation or visit their loved ones.

Travel experts are predicting a travel boom this year.

Already we are seeing more and more people driving and flying places, and after what seems like an eternity stuck at home, people can’t wait to do so -- even if it means bringing your hand-sanitizer and masks along, too.

“It just put a hole on everybody. I’d like to either leave the state to the Pacific Northwest, and I’ve got a sister near Loveland and Fort Collins ... I’d like to see her,” said Eric Valley, who lives in Colorado.

“I just got back from South Carolina three days ago,” another Colorado man added.

Whether it’s staying in Colorado or going across the country, people are hitting the road.

“So to the extent that 2020 was an unprecedented year for travel because nobody could travel, we think 2021, and 2022 as well, will also be unprecedented years,” said Skyler McKinley of AAA Colorado. “Everybody wants to travel, and we’ve been cooped up in our houses for a year.”

People are also taking to the skies.

“We’re definitely seeing a resurgence in air travel,” said Aidan Ryan of the Colorado Springs Airport. “In March, we were 67 percent higher in enplanements than the same time in 2020. Obviously, we were in the heart of the pandemic during that time.”

The Colorado Springs Airport is now offering Southwest flights. A spokesperson there says they are already seeing a wave of travelers.

“Currently before the summer hits we are already seeing about a 15 percent increase in travelers through the checkpoint. So we are excited about that.”

Experts say the increase in travel is a combination of things. More people are getting vaccinated, and changing CDC guidelines are making people feel safer traveling. AAA Colorado says 60 percent of Coloradans plan to travel this year -- up 10 percent from just a few months ago.

A lot of statistics are pointing in the right direction after a long year for not only people wanting to explore, but the travel industry as well.

“It is welcome news for everybody in the travel industry, which took really it on the chin during 2020. It is a miracle that many travel operators were able to survive,” McKinley added. “This is a really nice jolt of optimism.”

AAA Colorado says if you are planning to drive somewhere, make sure your car is in good working order and your driving skills aren’t rusty.

Another good tip is to possibly use a travel agent to help with booking.

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