FRANKLIN, Wis.— The daily life of a travel agent at Platinum Travel typically consists of helping families book cruises, flights, and all inclusive vacations.
Well, at least it used to.
Nowadays the job entails helping people rebook, cancel, and change reservations.
“With this just having lasted so long, at times I have had to reschedule trips two, maybe even three, times," says Sara Nowacki, a travel agent with Platinum Travel.
The pandemic decimated travel in 2020. However, with a vaccine now being distributed and people optimistic that some sense of normalcy may begin to return later this year, people are once again starting to make travel plans. Nowacki says different clients have different comfort levels.
“It is a mixed bag. I have some clients itching to travel, can't wait to travel, feel they have been cooped up, as many of us do, and some that are more reserved, take time to make sure things are safer," says Nowacki.
So what will demand look like for travel post-pandemic?
Nowacki says it is impossible to predict that exactly. However, she expects prices for flights and vacations to rise as demand increases. Yet she expects airlines and cruise ships to operate at reduced capacity or frequency.
“If you are looking at flights, there is not the availability anymore. Airlines have cut down schedules and changed them all the time so it is hard to find non-stop flights out of Milwaukee right now," says Nowacki.
It will likely be a while before cruises return to normal as well. All major cruise lines still are not sailing, with Princess Cruise Lines just announcing in recent days they will not resume sailings until at least May. Nowacki expects other cruise lines will follow suit as well.