By now we’re all aware that Covid is a moving target. Just as we acclimate to the current situation, the state of the world changes.
There is no better example of this than the Omicron variant. After moving in the direction of a return to normal life during late summer and fall of 2021, skyrocketing cases were an unsettling setback – especially for people who’d made plans to travel in 2022.
While Omicron does spread quickly, it typically causes less severe symptoms than prior variants. Factor in protection from vaccines and emerging treatments, and we have more knowledge and tools than ever before. For more information about COVID-19 and the Omicron variant, consult the CDC website.
Still, there’s a lot of uncertainty regarding the safety and possibility of international travel, especially for those who have travel plans or are in the early stages of planning a trip abroad. Here’s a closer look at what experts expect for travel in 2022, along with why Business Class is your go-to solution to finding the best first-class flight deals.
Flying During the Omicron Outbreak
CNBC asked Delta Air Lines about their predictions on travel and international flights, and – according to the airline – the future looks bright. Airline executives say they think that corporate travel will return to pre-Omicron levels by this spring. Delta’s President, Glen Hauenstein, remarked in a statement, “When we get to spring and summer, we’ll see a robust demand for business travel.”
Corporate travelers had a similar perspective. While a significant amount remains up in the air, 80% of business travelers reported that they expect to travel just as often as they did in 2021.
Members of the Delta Airlines team also say this bodes well for leisure travelers, who were hesitant to book their summer vacations. Don’t worry, there’s still plenty of time to make these travel arrangements!
HotStats also had a bright outlook on travel this year, stating that the world is recovering from both the Delta and Omicron variants.
The data indicates that while the pandemic has had some impact on travel, this downtick in November was primarily seasonal in nature. If things continue to follow this pattern, we’ll see an uptick with seasonal travel trends.
Is It Safe to Travel?
Given Omicron’s higher transmission rates, prospective travelers may also have concerns about whether it’s safe to fly. These concerns are somewhat valid. According to International Air Transport Association physician and medical adviser David Powell, flyers are two to three times more likely to contract Covid during a flight since the emergence of the Omicron variant.
That being said, there are steps you can take to reduce the risk, including being fully vaccinated (plus the booster shot), masking up, social distancing, regular hand washing, and avoiding contact with those who are sick.
International Travel and Omicron
These higher transition rates can be especially alarming to international travelers who may be concerned about tighter border rules and the threat of quarantines. Wizz Air chief executive Jozsef Varadi told Reuters, “Clearly there are uncertainties so if you catch Covid you may get stuck in a country which is quite unpredictable to you.”
While this risk still exists, there is good news. Even though there is some uncertainty involved with international bookings, the outlook for spring and summer is promising. Former CDC director Dr. Tom Fieden told CNN, “I think if we do it right, we’re going to have a 2022 in which Covid doesn’t dominate our lives so much.”
Fly Safer and In Style With Business Class
While there’s no guarantee that another variant won’t come along, things are looking up both for executive travel in the immediate future and for leisure travelers in the weeks and months ahead. When you are ready to book your trip, there’s no better way to do it than with first-class flight tickets from Business Class.
If you’re wondering how to book first-class flights, the answer is Business Class! Enjoy up to 60% off discount first-class flights and other first-class deals courtesy of the travel team.
For the best first class and business flights to Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and other popular destinations, shop Business Class!