DES MOINES, Iowa — The travel industry was hit hard in 2020 by the coronavirus pandemic, with many people having to cancel or postpone trips. But a Des Moines travel advisor is noticing an uptick in people inquiring about and booking trips for 2021.
Michaela Moore with Creative Vacations said during the first week of January, she had about 15 people call her office to discuss travel plans. She has seen an 80% increase in bookings recently compared to the time period of March through October.
During the early days of the pandemic, the travel advisor noted it was a crazy time period to work in the travel industry.
"We spent a lot of time booking and re-booking and re-booking [trips]," Moore said.
Destination weddings, honeymoons and family vacations were among the most commonly-planned trips.
"I finished out last year with sales less than a million dollars than I typically do in a year, which was a huge difference over year's past," Moore said.
However, she said 2021 is looking better than last year.
At the end of 2020, calls picked up with people wanting to travel, and it's been increasing since then.
She has had people wanting to book domestically like heading to South Dakota or going to luxury lodges, while others have been opting to travel to some international destinations.
"Lots of Mexico, lots of Jamaica and the Dominican Republic, Moore said.
"They are kind of the most popular from our area."
When speaking with her clients as to reasons why they are choosing to begin traveling again, the responses vary.
Some tell her they are tired of being at home, others are excited about the rollout of the vaccine while a few have mentioned beginning wanting to travel again because of the election.
"Working on a global scale when you're sending people outside of the U.S., they're always kind of mindful as to how they're going to be received when they get to the country they're going," Moore said. "But we have had more clients that were kind of waiting until after the election to see what happened."
Moore also noted, some of her future international bookings for travel are to places near the United States, some clients have booked vacations in Maldives or locations in Europe.