As vaccinations continue to rollout across South Florida and demand for leaving home increases, travel agencies are gearing up for a busy season. Especially as airlines and cruise lines are rebounding in bookings.
When the coronavirus first hit, travelers were canceling their trips left and right. Gus Macahdo with Brickell Travel says they lost millions of dollars in business.
"We were doing to about $85 million in business and we went from 85 to zero," said Machado.
But now, travel is on the rebound. A recent tripadvisor survey found that 80% of U.S. consumers planned to take at least one overnight domestic leisure trip in 2021. The survey also found a lot of interest in international travel planning.
"Our clients are calling us, there’s just not enough space, enough rooms, enough flights, enough cruises available for how many people are calling us," said Machado.
Travelers, especially in South Florida, are also eyeing cruises, a good sign for the many cruise lines that had to abandon sailing for over a year.
"We’re booking cruises now for September, October, and November," added Machado.
Angel Rosario is one of Machado's clients.
"I’m going to Atlanta soon, but I want to plan a cruise trip with my family," said Rosario.
Rosario said as soon as things started to get back to normal, he contacted Gus to plan his next trip.
"Get some sun, get to the beach, just enjoy some drinks and have fun with the family. Everyone’s excited and I believe the cruise lines are going to extreme lengths make sure everyone is safe and comfortable on board," said Rosario.
"Business is definitely picking up. We’re not nearly where we were, but I see the light at the end of the tunnel and we see a lot of progress. This month has been very good for us, compared to the last 15 months," said Machado.
Machado said airlines and cruise lines have different cancellation policies, so it’s important to take note of that and get more information before booking your next trip.