The Travel Industry – Heading for the Brexit door?
It’s been a pretty momentous day for Britain and the British economy, so we asked our friend Graham McKenzie, the Managing Director of Travelmole, for his thoughts on the implications of the vote on the travel industry.
Today feels for many like the day after a huge argument at which you storm out and say you’re never coming back only to realise that it’s reality. The United Kingdom’s exit from the EU has sent almost untold shivers down the spines of people and the reaction of the financial markets has added to those concerns. Doomsday scenarios are being spread around about visas, mobile phones, and open skies .The travel industry will feel the brunt almost before anybody else as at an instant the trip you were planning to almost anywhere overseas this summer has become immediately more expensive.
Decisions on travel will, I suspect, be postponed for at the very least a few weeks and possibly a few months. If you couple this with the terror turmoil in places like Egypt, Tunisia, Turkey, worries about some places in Greece and the Zika hit countries of South America it all paints a drab and depressing picture. I would not be surprised to see an element of ‘consolidation’ amongst travel suppliers and agents, especially for those that are not well placed cash wise.
The UK traveller is, however, a resilient character. In the past few years the appetite for travel has been tested time and time again and each time the hunger has remained. Be it expense, terror or health, the obstinate bulldog spirit has won through. With this new dawn inevitably new opportunities and new ways of doing business will be found. Is this an opportunity for some of those countries listed above that are currently on the ‘no-go’ list to emerge with new offers and new attractions? Will, as in the 2008 crisis, destinations makes special arrangements to add value to entice the UK pound even if it is worth less? Will the rise of the all-inclusive become even stronger?
The fact is that many economies around the world are dependent on UK holidaymakers and they will not just accept the fact that the numbers are not what they once were. That, combined with the demand from consumers for their break away (no pun intended) will I think see the Travel Industry remain in fine fettle in the long run.