The World Travel and Tourism Council has estimated the COVID-19 pandemic could cut 50 millions job worldwide in the travel and tourism industry. Lockdown and travel ban are necessary steps to stop the spread of the virus.
A few months ago, Triip team sat together to discuss about our plan for 2020 - how to encourage people to travel more sustainably. How can we contribute to better the environment as a responsible traveler.
And I am sure, other people in this industry were sitting with their team, ready to rock 2020.
A few months ago, we had a plan for booming travel year in 2020.
Everybody had a plan until they got punch in the face when the pandemic swept into more than 120 countries. World Health Organization has officially classified COVID-19 as a global pandemic.
The pandemic isn’t just in Asian countries anymore. It spreads through Europe countries and then hit the most powerful country in the world. The US has the highest number of people affected by the virus. When the country many expected to be the readiest against the pandemic has failed, all plans are out of the window. No one thinks about traveling anymore.
ADAPT TO THE CHANGING
After going through different stages, worried about all the plans changing and the fear of the uncertainty for this industry, we realize this pandemic won’t end soon. Furthermore, the travel & tourism industry needs time to fully recover as it is one of the most impacted industry by COVID-19. Everyone has to start doing something instead of waiting.
We have a Malaysian tour guide. With his connection with boutique hotels and homestay, he grouped some other tour guides aka artists, to have collaborations with owners who have yet to finish their decor, a “get now, pay later” solution. In turn owners are able to save on cost for decor of their hotels. And of course, there is no suitable time than now to upgrade the hotels, especially when there is no guests coming in while still providing a source of income for tour guides.
We also saw different tour guides with connections to local people helping the farmers to sell fruits which help them earn more money when they don’t have customers.
The pandemic isn’t in our plan. But looking on the bright side, we have a good chance to take a crash course on how to adapt to situations outside of our control on a scale that none of our team members have experienced before.
So as a travel tech company, how can we deal with this situation?
Our plan was the Travel Hero - a campaign where we plant a tree for every booking from travelers. Our plan was reaching the number of Proof of Travel from travelers because no one can travel at this moment.
We have been motivating people to travel and share happiness are our core values (S.H.A.R.E: Sustainability - Happiness - Adventurer - Resillience - Excellence). What we can do in time of social distancing and everything seems to go against our value.
Stay Home Heroes started from changing our previous plan and the perspectives - STAY NOW, TRAVEL LATER. We still do what we do best - inspire people. But now, we repurpose Proof of Travel to Proof of Stay. We call people joining this campaign - Stay Home Heroes.
As a travel tech company, we adapt, we learn and change quick. We join a hackathon which specific focus on finding solution to fight against COVID-19 and help people during this tough time. We do best when we don’t have much time, and a lot of pressure.
72 hours, 3 days and a whole weekend of working hard together as a member of Triip team, not product team or growth team. Just Triip team. In 72 hours, we came up with that idea, submitted it to #BuildforCOVID19 hackathon, and made it into a reality.
This is the story of Stay Home Heroes.
This pandemic will end. Everyone will travel again and share memories together. We will meet again on a beautiful day. We will grow better and more appreciative of each other.
Until the moment we can be traveler and a wanderlust again, we are Stay Home Heroes, together.
If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude.