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Highlights of what the “return to travel” will look like this summer, and what you can anticipate next time you’re on the road

Return to Travel

It has now been over a year since travel as we knew it came to a halt due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As vaccination rates increase and restrictions begin to ease, what has changed since the early days of 2020?

Below are some highlights of what the “return to travel” will look like this summer, and what you can anticipate next time you’re on the road. 

  1. The American Hotel and Lodging Association (AHLA) recently released an update to its “Safe Stay” guidelines, explaining that “In light of the recent CDC announcement that fully vaccinated people no longer need to wear a mask or physically distance in most settings, our Safe Stay guidelines will relax mask requirements for guests who are fully vaccinated.” Be prepared to double check with your FedRooms hotel on face mask requirements before your stay, as properties are still required to follow state and local guidance and/or hotel company policy.

  2. Our FedRooms partner hoteliers have implemented new policies and programs focused on cleanliness. Travelers can access the comprehensive list of the cleaning measures on FedRooms.com when scrolling down to the “Cleanliness Standards” section. These measures will likely stay in place for long after the pandemic and probably on a permanent basis. Anticipate fewer properties with daily housekeeping services unless requested, especially for longer term stays.

  3. Most hotels have moved toward less communal access in all aspects of the travel experience. Many properties have removed complimentary drinks and treats in the lobby and have also opted to offer individual meal options as opposed to communal buffets. The thinking being, the less opportunity to gather in close proximity to other guests, the better.

  4. Your hotel room may have a lot more plastic than normal, as brands seek to keep high-touch items sanitary. This includes remote controls, cups, ice buckets and more. While FedRooms hotels will always provide individual shampoo, lotion and soap bottles in the bathroom, pens and paper on the desk will be lacking. 

  5. Focus on contact-less service. Expect plexiglass dividers at check-in desks, and virtual check-in options through smartphones, eliminating the need to come into contact with another person to gain access to your room. Traditional room service is now served in a bag with a no-touch delivery.

As demand for hotel nights rise this summer, our FedRooms properties are doing everything possible to prepare to keep travelers safe. Summer travel will likely not look the way it did prior to 2020, but that isn’t necessarily negative. The hotel industry will continue to evolve for the needs of the traveler, as it has done in the past and will continue to do in the future.