Editor’s Note (8/24/2020): This article includes findings from ICF’s fifth wave of data collection that was fielded July 23 through July 28. The fifth wave collected 1,000 completes using a census-balanced, national non-probability sample. The new information, shared below, examines the impact of COVID-19 on the American public as well as their attitudes toward slowing the spread of COVID-19. Learn more about the ICF COVID-19 Monitor Survey of U.S. Adults.
Frequent travelers’ willingness to engage in domestic and international air travel in 2020 recedes to levels seen in May.
While in June we reported upticks in willingness of frequent travelers to engage in both domestic and international air travel at some point during 2020, this has eroded back to essentially the same levels that we reported in our May survey. This decline in willingness to engage in air travel coincides with the summer surge in COVID-19 cases across the United States.
Belief in the importance of masks increases precipitously among frequent travelers.
While belief in the importance of other public health and social distancing measures like “staying three to six feet away from others” and “self-quarantining for 14 days if exposed to someone with COVID-19” has remained flat (and both north of 90%) from our June survey, frequent travelers expressed a marked increase in the belief in the importance of masks, with 89% reporting that they believe it is “somewhat important” or “very important” to wear a face mask to “stop the spread of the coronavirus,” up from 85% in June.
This coincides with a big swing in belief regarding masks held by those frequent travelers willing to resume domestic air travel immediately in summer 2020: 31% of frequent travelers polled in July expressed a belief that mask wearing “should not be done” or is “not too important” in stopping the spread of the coronavirus. This is down from 41% of these same travelers who held this belief in June.
Reluctance to engage in cruise travel has dropped to the lowest levels we have reported.
While our last survey showed a slight improvement in willingness to engage in cruise travel by Summer 2021 or earlier, 53% of frequent travelers now report that they would not be willing to engage in cruise travel until later than Summer 2021, illustrating the challenging position the cruise industry finds itself in.
Watch this space.
How will American frequent travelers’ feelings and behaviors change as the summer season ends and the pandemic continues? We will report key findings from our data collection efforts over the coming months and share this information. Sign up to receive alerts as we roll out upcoming results and package our insights into reports.