The pandemic has taken a toll on our collective global society from all perspectives. As we continue to assess the damage and chart a way forward, we at Discover Corps have spent hours on Zoom calls, like many of you, musing on what comes next. We consider ourselves eternal optimists and have really started to focus on one silver lining, how can we use this moment as an opportunity? An opportunity to re-invent the way we explore our world and fundamentally shift travel from a wholly consumptive experience to something that strengthens our shared humanity.
We may be biased, but we feel that we are perfectly positioned here at Discover Corps to help spark this change. As a certified B Corp, it’s in our DNA to question the status quo and utilize the networks we build and business we generate to be a force for good. Whether it’s focusing our efforts on the welfare of our world’s most unique creatures, visiting places and people that commit to the social welfare of their communities or actively choosing partnerships based on their depth of local impact, we consider ourselves a different type of travel company. And that is what the post-COVID world needs.
We are most likely going to see domestic travel re-emerge followed by regional openings such as the Caribbean, parts of Mexico and Central America for U.S.-based travelers. Overseas travel will probably open in waves as different regions of the world recover and put in place the proper mechanisms to facilitate safe travel. A new normal will slowly be put into place which Discover Corps, as a certified B-Corp, is perfectly positioned to help grow:
- Small Groups & Intimate Experiences – More than ever, savvy travelers will seek out small group tours helping to offset the rising tide of over-tourism prior to the pandemic.
- Boutique Properties – Small, boutique properties will be increasingly sought out for their more intimate, less exposed floor plans as opposed to large resorts or hotel chains.
- Off-the-Beaten-Track Locales – Far from the hordes of travelers in sinking Venice or the lines of selfie stick enthused, flag-following large groups, travel will re-emerge in areas that it truly benefits and are less crowded than the big urban metropolises.
- Long-standing partnerships – Tour operators that have long-standing relationships with their in-country partners and suppliers, like most of Discover Corps’, will continue to thrive given the trust shaped through years (and sometimes decades) of partnership.
- Caretakers Wanted – The pandemic has exposed our collective vulnerability. Travelers will increasingly gravitate towards tour operators that are caretakers of our world’s unique cultures, increasingly threatened wildlife & planet’s limited natural resources.
Transitions, and more importantly clean slates, are extremely rare at a global scale and that is truly the silver-lining of the situation we find ourselves in today. We will have the way – a vaccine will hopefully come forth and the proper safety protocol will be put in place to travel safely again. The question is do we have the will? The will to create a more environmentally conscious, less extractive form of travel. The will to listen to communities before we arrive in droves and over consume the often limited resources. The will to use travel as the powerful tool of development that it can be when approached in the right way.
We at Discover Corps are optimists and are excited to have you join us as we help bring travel back and explore the world again not as tourists, but as true global citizens.