SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — COVID-19 has changed many people’s plans in the past year, But some people are hoping to travel in 2021.
In 2020, Stephanie Rapp said she only left Missouri one time to go dancing in Arkansas but wanted to go to other places.
“I had plans this year to travel to Florida, I was gonna go to Sweden. I was gonna go to Texas, Chicago and Delaware. All for dancing,” said Rapp.
Springfield’s 417 Travel Agency said there was some traveling during the pandemic.
“Our major destinations, about 60% of our business in Mexico and the Caribbean, has been open since May, and we’ve had travelers going,” said Travis Paquin, co-owner of 417 Travel. “Definitely not as much as we’re used to, but we have had people travel.”
Paquin said getting someone to cancel a vacation, even in the middle of a pandemic, is difficult.
“Honeymooners, anniversaries, we’ve got a lot of safety protocols in place in these destinations, and most of our clients are telling us that they felt safer in places like Jamaica or Cancun than even here in the states,” said Paquin.
On a national scale, CBS travel director Peter Greenberg said people have gone from working in an office to working in their home, to anywhere.
“We’re seeing people making choices to literally leave cities with their entire families and go to vacation homes, and they can do so affordably,” said Greenberg. “Mom and dad are working remotely. The kids are learning remotely. They have all the social distancing they want. They’re not stuck in a long commute every day. They’re not spending money or time in their car with gas or just delays, and they’re not going out to eat every night.”
Greenberg said he has been studying the travel industry for more than 40 years. He said in a time like this, people should do their research before traveling to make sure you follow their guidelines.