A Guest Post by Lilly Miller
Just last year, we have based our travel choices on our personal preferences, professional opportunities, and of course, affordability. In the span of a single year, or more accurately, a few months, the entire world has come to a grinding halt, and the travel industry with it. Today, business travel is still questionable, and few countries allow the organization of any event that might gather a significant number of professionals. Social distancing, travel bans, and other preventative measures are still very much enforced, and business trips halted until further notice.
The pandemic has affected business travel in numerous ways, but how we tackle post-pandemic trips is a completely different matter. It’s no longer just a matter of being healthy and having the legal right to enter a specific place. Every single country in the world has developed a specific reputation in these past few months, simply by responding differently to this crisis. The countries that have handled the situation poorly will likely remain on a no-fly list for most companies, while those that have masterfully handled such a delicate situation will become prime destinations for business travel.
Switzerland, of course
This country is famous for its diligence in every possible way, so it’s not a surprise that Switzerland is the safest travel destination in the world thanks to its efficient monitoring, risk management, and control of the pandemic’s progression. They have done so exceptionally well in every aspect of responding to the crisis that their economy shows tremendous potential to bounce back quickly.
As for travel restrictions, they are slowly opening their borders to more countries, once they prove to be safe. That said, if you’re running your business in a country with a similarly brilliant response plan, you will likely be able to send your executives for essential business trips to Switzerland in the months to come.
The impressive New Zealand
On the other half of the globe, New Zealand stands out as a country with an exceptional response plan, rigorous preventative measures, and overwhelming collective awareness. The country’s swift and unwavering response has not just assured its citizens that everything is done to keep them safe, but it has also propelled the country to the very top of desirable destinations for post-pandemic travel.
Once the country removes its restrictions and the pandemic ends, business travelers will be encouraged to visit, but with specific preventative measures in mind to prevent the resurgence of the disease. For example, traveling from one place to another will be smarter with the help of local services such as trustworthy car hire in Christchurch and other cities instead of large-scale transportation options that increase the risk of spreading the disease. Unnecessary social interactions will be kept at a minimum with these and similar travel and accommodation options in New Zealand.
Germany’s rigorous approach
Even from the early stages of the pandemic, Germany has been recognized as one of the most successful at stifling the spreading of the virus with a very clear and targeted strategy based on extensive testing. They have been conducting over 50,000 tests per day, which is a staggering number compared to its neighboring countries.
As a result, their mortality rates have been lower and they have kept the progression of the pandemic under greater control. These early preventative measures and smarter ways to get a better grip over the pandemic have put the country on the list of the safest places to visit once the pandemic is over.
Slow and steady in Hong Kong
A beehive among fast-growing metropolises, Hong Kong is certainly a favorite for many global business travelers, and it will remain one well after the pandemic. Aware of the dire situation caused by the crisis, Hong Kong has created a recovery plan to help rebuild its travel sector carefully, with elevated standards, and smarter solutions for visitors.
Of course, this is all expected to come to life once the lockdown is lifted and the pandemic over, but until then, companies can slowly start preparing for a post-covid world of business trips. To adapt to the new normal, more specialized and better-equipped business accommodation will become a top necessity in hubs such as Hong Kong, precisely to ensure better cleanliness, smarter social distancing, while still empowering safe networking events.
Put Singapore on your list
This city-state already has a sterling reputation in the business world for their dedication to innovative solutions and brilliant incentives for entrepreneurs and business owners. Although this health crisis has initially been very difficult for the vast majority of countries in Asia, Singapore has tackled it with great thoroughness and dedication, much like any previous challenge as well.
Since Singapore is the travel hub of Asia and a beloved destination for international travelers, it stands to reason that the travel industry will need to be restored at least partially over the next year to help grow the economy. Although executives are still reluctant to travel due to the pandemic, it’s expected that Singapore will rightfully be at the very top of the travel-friendly lists for many professionals across the world as the health crisis dwindles.
Over time, countries will find different ways to restore their reputations in the eyes of international companies. They will have to invest in smarter, more affordable, and secure solutions to ensure the safety and health of their visitors as well as residents, and we have yet to see which destinations earn the respect of the global business community. The listed ones are certainly in the lead with their continuously promising approach to handling this crisis, so we have high hopes that others will follow in their footsteps to make business travel more available over time.