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Some tourism experts think staycations will become part of a more long-lasting change in travel behavior.
Travel-deprived Taiwanese would do anything to satisfy their wanderlust during the Covid-19 pandemic. Some found joy in going through the trouble of airport security check for a scenic flight to nowhere.
While Taiwan has not recorded any local transmission since April 12, global border restrictions have kept Taiwanese from traveling abroad. Domestic travel craze took over the Covid-free island, with urban dwellers crowding out hiking trails and limited accommodation in surrounding islands.
Taiwan’s well-trodden tourist destinations have benefited from government subsidies and enthusiastic summer travelers. But high-end hotels in metropolitan areas were mostly left out of the domestic travel boom.
Without a steady supply of international and business travelers, luxury hotels in Taipei have tailored staycation packages to a new client base: the “microcationers.”
Since outdoor or rooftop swimming pools are hard to come by in Taipei, luxury hotels are taking advantage of their well-equipped facilities. W Taipei, for example, has offered a discounted “daydream” summer deal for those who enjoy a relaxing weekend by the pool.
Meanwhile, Regent Taipei innovated with a “Sleepless Taipei” package, which featured a luxurious overnight stay with an open-air movie screening at its rooftop pool.
Stella Ying, marketing assistant manager at Regent Taipei, told The News Lens that her team has crafted staycation packages based on current industry trends, which gear toward wellness and cultural immersion.
During the summer, the “cruise package” was the most popular since it catered to families with young children, Ying said. It offered a buffet lounge that was inspired by cruise dining, in addition to handicraft and cooking workshops for kids.
“Staycations have been a huge boon to our revenue,” Ying said. “Compared to April, our August room stay revenue increased by 300%.”
Short trips and microcation trends may well continue into 2021 as the pandemic rages on. Some tourism experts think staycations will become part of a more long-lasting change in travel behavior.
New luxury hotels are launching in other parts of Asia during a dry tourism season, with more brands focused on health and wellness.
In the United States, the average traveler in 2020 kept their destination within four hours from home, according to a survey conducted by VacationRenter.com. Over half of the respondents agreed that staycations can be just as enjoyable as a vacation far away.
The shutdown of international travel has also offered a rare chance for staycationers to pamper themselves in luxury hotels — which they may not otherwise consider — at a discount.
TNL Editor: Daphne K. Lee, Nicholas Haggerty (@thenewslensintl)
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