With nations on lockdown, tour companies ready for go time

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — The pandemic put an end to most travel. Tour companies cancelled trips and cut workers. But now they’re back offering trips to Peru, the Galapagos, and European river cruises.

Natural Habitat Adventures has released a beautiful book filled with exotic trips. Liberty Travel is about to reopen offices. Gate 1 Travel in Fort Washington, Montgomery County, is emailing lists of fabulous vacations.

Marty Seslow, Gate 1 Travel’s vice president of marketing, says he’s hopeful travel will be safe by late summer or early fall.

“Between both vaccines being available, with all the talk among airlines and international destinations about coming together on some level of — if it’s a health passport or otherwise — that will ensure safety for travelers to enter countries and be able to cross borders and travel both freely and safely,” he said.

He adds his company put a lot of thought into which tours to offer.

“When we resumed our marketing activities this month, we decided to put the general mix of destinations, internationally, that we always sold, going back to what was successful for us in 2017, 18 and 19. And have found remarkably the proportional business  in Europe, Asia and South Central Asia is remarkably almost exactly what it was  in 2019.”

Seslow expects travel will be different because of governmental health regulations, which may change at a moment’s notice. But companies are offering small groups for safety along with flexible exchange policies because the pandemic’s uncertainty.