With the current easing of COVID-19 travel restrictions and growing vaccination rates across the Province, a new BCAA Travel Confidence Survey reveals confidence in international travel is starting to return, with 58% of British Columbians saying they feel ready to travel either this year or next.
While 41% say the soonest they’ll travel is 2022, the survey conducted for BCAA by Insights West, found that British Columbians aged 55+ are most likely to feel ready to travel again sooner. More than one-in-five (21%) of them are confident about travelling later this year, which BCAA believes could indicate the return of the ‘snowbird’ travelers and reflect their high rate of full vaccination. Younger age groups are more cautious, with 26% of 18-34-year-olds saying the soonest they’ll travel is the second half of 2022.
Potential travellers still have significant concerns about COVID, but while 80% worry that pandemic restrictions will take away from enjoyment of their trip, and 76% worry about being exposed to COVID while away, 81% feel confident in their ability to keep themselves/family safe during their trip. Reassuringly, 86% say that they’ll plan and prepare with information like vaccination rates, local case numbers and government restrictions for their chosen destination. And 87% will protect their trip by buying travel insurance for trips outside of Canada.
“Travel confidence comes from planning and ensuring your safety and the safety of others. It’s encouraging to see people taking their time to think through their travel and factor COVID-19 safety into their plans while also protecting themselves with travel insurance that includes COVID coverage,” said Namita Kearns, BCAA’s Director of Insurance Products. “We’re seeing travel insurance sales increasing significantly month over month as people look to international destinations again.”
According to the BCAA Travel Confidence Survey, British Columbians are taking their time to think about and plan trips. Just thirteen per cent of those thinking of a trip before the end of 2022 have already booked, while 30% are currently planning. And over half (58%) haven’t started formal planning but are thinking seriously about their trip.
BCAA recommends that people do their research and look to protect themselves as they book upcoming travel options. “Do your research beforehand, and plan ahead to make sure you won’t be at risk of a costly mistake,” said Namita Kearns. “Check your insurance coverage, ask questions, and stay safe.”
BCAA advises travellers to check how much COVID coverage their insurance provides for their vaccination status, and whether their policy includes access to virtual medical care. More travel planning and insurance tips for travellers can be found at bcaa.com/backtotravel.