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Many Britons have felt understandably uncertain about flying abroad this year thanks to the coronavirus pandemic. Earlier this year, international travel was effectively brought to a halt as countries imposed their own respective lockdowns. Some Britons shelved their travel plans and looked for staycations closer to home.
The travel ban led to many airlines and holiday companies cancelling their flights and packages.
Now, according to the largest global passenger survey since the pandemic began, 75 percent of Britons are not expecting to return to their former travel plans when the coronavirus pandemic comes to an end.
The ‘Passenger Confidence Tracker’ was commissioned by Inmarsat and reveals the views of almost 10,000 airline passengers around the world.
The survey reflects the views and attitudes of 9,500 respondents from 12 countries about the future of flying. The respondents included 1,000 UK passengers.
The UK and many other countries across the world have implemented international travel restrictions to help halt the spread of COVID-19.
According to the survey, Britons are now more concerned about having to quarantine than the risk of catching the virus on the plane or while abroad.
The travel corridor list, which is reviewed on a weekly basis, has had a significant impact on overseas travel from the UK in 2020.
Countries not included on the list require Britons to self-isolate to return on their return to the UK.
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The survey also revealed that just 23 percent of UK passengers have taken a flight since the pandemic began.
This is less than the survey’s global average of 34 percent.
An astounding 31 percent said they are planning to travel less frequently by air in the future.
But it’s not all bad news with UK business travellers being the most likely to change their habits as a result of the pandemic – 79 percent surveyed said they’re expecting to do so.
The ‘Passenger Confidence Tracker’ was conducted just weeks before England entered its second national lockdown, and found that the UK was the most confident in the world to fly immediately, which was topped only by Hungary.
Some of the most surprising statistics referred to the age of those being more likely to fly.
The survey found that people in the UK aged between 55-64 are the most likely age group to feel confident about getting on a flight today.
However, those aged between 18 and 24 are among the least likely to get on a flight.
Sixty-three percent of passengers said they would expect to feel confident flying within the next year.
Philip Balaam, President of Inmarsat Aviation, said: “Our ‘Passenger Confidence Tracker’ reveals a fascinating shift in travel behaviour, which could see air travel entirely reshaped.
“While people in the UK are amongst the most confident to return to the skies in the short term, the findings reveal that they remain concerned by points of engagement and proximity with others on their journey.
“As such, there is a clear opportunity for airlines to implement digital solutions – from telemedicine to inflight immigration clearance – that boost confidence, while ensuring stringent health and safety needs can be met.”
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