‘We are hoping that the vaccination programme can be escalated and that there is then a plan in place around vaccinated travel. We also need that before consumers will be confident to book.’
Canuckiwi represents a number of US destinations, including Washington DC, Utah, Oregon, Grapevine Texas, New England and Alaska.
Marshall notes that the fiscal year for his clients is 1 July. ‘If they don’t see us coming back while other countries are, they will put their efforts into those places.’
Chris Ingram of Memphis Tourism and chair of Visit USA committee in New Zealand, notes American representatives remain active in the market dispite the uncertainty about resumption of travel.
‘We’ve got an event for travel agents next Tuesday morning (6 July) with a small in-person function and a larger virtual presentation. We’ve got 130 agents rsvp’d for that so it’s a positive sign.’
He says from a Memphis point of view, the city is really getting back to business – particularly with domestic travellers.
‘The big challenge, like in other places, is finding people to work in the restaurants, hotels and attractions. But it is certainly positive that things are starting up again.’