While “lockdown light” and numerous risk areas are depressing the mood in travel sales in November 2020, the progress in the development of a vaccine, the persistent German desire to travel as well as the testing of new test concepts are raising hope. However, the Tourism Sales Climate Index continues to stabilize at a very low level.
Dr. Fried & Partner has been recording the mood at the counter on a monthly basis since 2005.
Particularly the current situation is being assessed more negatively than in the previous month and is once again at a similarly low level as in the first lockdown.
Since April of this year, none of the participating travel agencies has judged the current situation as good. This continues into the month of November. Instead, almost all participants (99.2%) rate the current situation in the sale of travel services as poor. Only 0.8% of the travel agencies evaluate the situation as satisfactory. In October, 1.6% of the participants considered the situation to be satisfactory.
Likewise, also the current distribution of travel services in the last 2-3 months, by comparison to the previous year, are estimated more negatively than they did in the previous month. While in October, 96.1% of the participants stated that travel sales had decreased in comparison to a year ago, 98.5% of those surveyed indicated this in November. Whereas 1.5% of the respondents assessed the distribution of travel services as unchanged compared to the previous year (previous month: 3.1%). None of the travel agencies indicated that travel sales have increased.
After the assessment experienced a minimal upward trend in summer, both the colder season and high corona figures are once again implying a more critical assessment of the current situation.
In view of expectations for the future, a cautious upward trend is evident.
91.7% of the participating travel agencies still assume that the demand for travel services will decline in comparison to the previous year. Nevertheless, travel sales are generally more positive than in the previous month about expectations for the next six months. For example, 4.5% of those surveyed – more travel agencies than before (previous month: 1.6%) – expect the demand to rise in the next 6 months. Whereas 3.8% anticipate the demand to remain unchanged.
Regarding the future profit situation in travel sales, 2.3% of those surveyed expect to see an improvement in the coming 6 months (previous month: 2.4%). In contrast, 87.1% assume that the profit situation will deteriorate. In October, 91.3% were indicating this. 4.3% more than in the previous month expect the profit situation not to change (10.6%).
Initial successes in the development of vaccines are nurturing hopes of a normalization. Cautious optimism is emerging with regard to future demand and profitability in travel distribution.
Overall, the sentiment in German travel sales continues to be depressed – especially in regard to the current situation. Nevertheless, cautious optimism is evident, especially when looking ahead to the future.
In November 2020, 133 travel agencies participated in the survey (previous month 129).