IATA survey shows people want to return to air travel

The latest poll of recent travellers by the International Air Transport Association (IATA), reveals growing confidence in a return to air travel, frustration with current travel restrictions, and acceptance of a travel app to manage health credentials for travel. People want to get back to travel, but quarantine is the showstopper. 84% stated they will not travel if there is a chance of quarantine at the destination.

The poll results found:

  • 88% believe that when opening borders, the right balance must be struck between managing COVID-19 risks and getting the economy going again.
  • 85% believe that governments should set COVID-19 targets such as testing capacity or vaccine distribution to re-open borders.
  • 84% believe that COVID-19 will not disappear, and we need to manage its risks while living and traveling normally.
  • 68% agree that their quality of life has suffered with travel restrictions.
  • 49% believe that air travel restrictions have gone too far.

While there is public support for travel restrictions, people are feeling more comfortable with managing the risks of COVID-19.

People are also feeling frustrated with the loss of freedom to travel, with 68% indicating their quality of life is suffering as a result. IATA states that travel restrictions come with health, social and economic consequences.  40% reported mental stress and missing an important human moment as a result of travel restrictions.

IATA says that the top priority of everybody at the moment is staying safe amid the COVID-19 crisis. But it is important to plan a way to being able to re-open borders, manage risks and enable people to get on with their lives. That includes the freedom to travel.

The poll also found that 57% expect to be travelling within two months of the pandemic being contained, and that:

  • 72% want to travel to see family and friends as soon as possible.
  • 81% believe that they will be more likely to travel once they are vaccinated.
  • 84% will not travel if there is a chance of quarantine at the destination.
  • 56% will postpone travel until the economy stabilises.

As testing capacity and technology improves and the vaccinated population grows, the conditions for removing quarantine measures are being created. The poll found that 89% believe that governments need to standardise vaccine and testing certificates. 78% said they would only use a travel credential app if they have full control over their data. 60% said they will not use a travel credential app if data is stored centrally.