The coming period is going to be extremely tough, but will lead to a more resilient travel sector, says Travolution editor Lee Hayhurst
As I sit here at home writing this the world outside my front window looks perfectly normal.
Opposite, work continues building three new homes, my neighbour, who has a chronic heart condition, has just gone out to walk his dog, and a Tesco delivery van has just set off back to base.
But the stream of information on my TV and my phone tells me that the world at large is anything but normal and we are on the verge of a very worrying period, unprecedented in human history.
This week’s incredible announcements from the UK Prime Minister and other political leaders in Europe and beyond leave us under no illusion about the seriousness of this developing situation.
For all Travolution readers and the wider online and digital travel sector all focus today will be on survival and looking after their employees’ health and safety.
For the time being that’s exactly how it should be and during this difficult period we, along with our sister title Travel Weekly, will be providing the best insight, advice and support possible.
We will also be continuing to provide news updates outside of the coronavirus crisis because the world continues to spin and we are planning for life getting back to normal once this crisis recedes.
Work continues to prepare for both our annual Summit in October and Awards in November and we hope information on these two important events provides some welcome respite from COVID-19.
Most industry gatherings are clearly not going to happen in the current situation, so it’s more important than ever that as an industry we remain digitally connected.
This is what is so invidious about this horrible little virus, that it is preying on our nature to be social creatures curious about the world and desperate to experience it and to meet new people.
Living in isolation is an anathema to human beings because it’s so contrary to makes us who we are and, for that reason, once restrictions can be lifted, I’ve no doubt this industry will roar back.
What this crisis is already underlining is that, even though we spend a lot of time living in our small individual family units, we are all part of a huge interconnected eco-system.
We’re learning that we must take responsibility for the individual day-to-day decisions we make, something travel was already facing due to the growing concerns over climate change.
I wish you all the very best for the coming period. It’s going to be extremely tough and help from governments and financial institutions is going to be required to pull the sector through it.
But I’ve no doubt we will see emerge a more passionate, more connected, more collegiate, more resilient travel sector, aware of its vulnerabilities but more convinced than ever of its importance.