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COVID-19 Related Travel Industry Trends

Updated Monthly

The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the travel industry continues to be far-reaching and rapidly evolving. And since pet resorts and the travel industry are inextricably linked, it’s important now more than ever to stay up-to-date on the latest trends.

In an effort to track and interpret current trends in the travel industry, free from political or media bias, we have compiled a collection of reliable data sources that provide an overview of travel patterns and transit methods. These sources include:

  • Transportation Security Administration (TSA) Data for Air Travel
  • Energy Information Agency (EIA) data for Gasoline Retail Supply
  • U.S. Hotel Occupancy Rates

This information will be updated weekly for the foreseeable future. Links to recent news articles are also included below for additional insights into the travel landscape as it evolves.

Pet Resort Google Search Trends

Google Search Trends show amazing growth in search interest, especially in dog boarding which reached its highest interest in the past 3 ½ years.  Dog Grooming, Dog Daycare have also seen steady but slower increases. Dog training continues to decline at a slow pace from its peak at the end of Feb 2021, but it is still significantly higher that pervious years. The growth in pet ownership during the pandemic is fueling much of the demand. This combined with the closing of a number of pet resorts, have pet owners searching for new solutions as they look to social their pets and begin traveling again.

Updated July 01, 2021

Year Over Year Pet Resort Search Trends

Click the images to enlarge.

Dog Boarding 2019 vs 2020

This is also supported by US Google Trends for the various services.  Google Trends shows an amazing surge in interest in Dog Boarding far exceeding both 2020 and 2019 levels starting mid-March 2021. It reached its highest levels the week ending 6/13/21.  This surge in demand combined with the difficulty in hiring staff, is causing a challenge for pet resort owners this summer.

Updated June 27, 2021

Dog Daycare 2019 vs 2020

Dog Daycare also has seen a similar surge in increase – again, driven by increased dog ownership and people wanting to get out of their house and socially acclimate their dogs.  Last week was the highest level of interest in dog daycare in the past few years.

Updated June 27, 2021

Dog Training 2019 vs 2020

Dog training search interest has also reached peak levels in March of this year, and has continue to decline, but remains significantly above prior year levels

Updated June 27, 2021

Dog Grooming 2019 vs 2020

While Dog Grooming has grown significantly after the winter, the past few weeks has become somewhat steady, at a high level similar to last summer when demand skyrocketed as people sought to groom their pets as businesses started to open back up.  We expect as summer winds down, we will see a decline in interest due to seasonality, but at levels still significantly above prior years.

Updated June 27, 2021

Transportation Security Administration (TSA) Data for Air Travel

Air travel continues its steady comeback, but is still falling short of 2019 levels.  The increase in vaccinations, the feeling that the pandemic is over, and the built up need to get out and travel is all fueling this trends. We continue to fall short due to the limited international travel and lockdowns/restrictions that continue in countries like Canada, Europe and Australia.  Travel is now averaging 79% of the travel level we saw in 2019, up from 65% overall in May.  We expect this trend to continue to improve, but until there is agreement between major tourist destinations in in Europe and other popular spots, we don’t expect to see 2019 air travel numbers until late fall at the earliest.

Updated through July 01, 2021

US Hotel Occupancy Rates

We are also seeing US Hotel Occupancy rate continue to  steadily climb, especially in the last month as summer started. Hotel occupancy rates are running at 69.9% as of 6/26/2021, which is only down 7.25% compared to 2019 occupancy levels.

Updated through June 26, 2021

In Summary

If your pet resort business is not experiencing these surges in demand for services like dog boarding, dog daycare, pet grooming and dog training, please reach out to us so we can make sure pet owners can find your business online.

As the travel landscape continues to evolve around the world, we will see new health and safety protocols and the gradual return of tourists and business travelers. 

As the Secretary-General of the UN’s World Tourism Organization observed:

Trust is the new currency” 

For our valued Pet Resort partners, your business is already based on the trust your clients place in you to care for their pets with as much loving attention as they would receive at home. Trust in the coronavirus climate expands that understanding to include increased cleaning measures to protect pets, clients and employees, flexibility when making reservations, and confidence that you will stand ready to serve your community and especially front-line workers. 

Check back often for up-to-date intel for making informed decisions regarding your pet resort business. We will continue to monitor the data and media coverage of travel trends in support of your efforts to serve your community and their beloved pets.