“Our consumer insights continue to reflect strong pent-up demand and therefore a wait-and-see approach, with plans being postponed rather than cancelled. In the current environment, our immediate bookings are driven primarily by urgent personal and business travel,” said said Rajeev Kale, President and Head of Country, Holidays, MICE and Visa at
(India). “Additionally, extended work-from-home announcements are forcing working professionals to return home from subways to Tier 2-3 cities.”
Kale said a limited number of requests started pouring in for summer vacation starting in April. Likewise, weekend/long weekend options for destinations closer to home, such as spa wellness breaks, road trips and villa stays, are attracting some interest.
“With the current sentiment of cautious optimism, we expect to see a definite uptick in travel sentiment and a much improved position as we move forward into the quarter and into the summer booking season,” he added.
A MakeMyTrip spokesperson said travelers can opt for a full refund for last-minute cancellations at more than 90% of hotel properties listed on the platform. “Travelers who book through MakeMyTrip can easily opt for a free date change option in the MyTrips section. Our teams are working around the clock to ensure that the website and app are updated in real time with the latest information on evolving travel guidelines and regulations,” the spokesperson said.
Prashant Pitti, co-founder of EaseMyTrip, said the platform has seen a temporary drop of around 15% in domestic bookings so far. “Restrictions and concerns with the new variant are the reasons for this shutdown. But we are optimistic that the situation will improve,” he said.