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As Omicron spreads, virtually 80% Canadians gained’t journey this vacation season: ballot – Nationwide

As Omicron spreads, virtually 80% Canadians gained’t journey this vacation season: ballot – Nationwide

A majority of Canadians won’t be travelling over the vacation interval, in line with a brand new ballot, because the highly-transmissible Omicron variant continues to drive a speedy rise in COVID-19 instances at house and overseas.

In a survey revealed Thursday by, 79 per cent stated they don’t plan to journey by aircraft in the course of the 2021 vacation season. However virtually 22 per cent stated they’d.

Learn extra:

Omicron COVID-19 variant disrupts vacation journey with over 6,000 flights cancelled

The web survey included 1,157 individuals and was performed from Dec 15-20. The survey questions targeted on air journey, which is taken into account comparatively safer than cruise journey, within the context of COVID-19, although riskier than travelling by automotive.

Heeding the federal authorities’s journey advisory to keep away from non-essential journey, 31 per cent of respondents stated they’ve cancelled their flights as a result of Omicron risk. Some 63 per cent stated they had been hesitant to e book new flights due to it.

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Nevertheless, 70 per cent said the Omicron variant, which is threatening to exchange the Delta variant because the dominant pressure in a number of international locations, had not affected their journey plans.

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Canadians ponder vacation journey plans after new advisory

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The Omicron variant has already led to tons of of flight cancellations because of workers shortages tied to COVID-19, disrupting vacation celebrations throughout one of many busiest journey instances of the yr.

Shifting regulation in response to Omicron and discomfort amongst Canadians is forcing many to rethink their journey plans, stated Kate Musgrove, director of

Learn extra:

Omicron and the vacations: How one can rejoice safely

Early analysis reveals the Omicron variant is extra transmissible than Delta, although it carries much less danger of hospitalization and extreme sickness.

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“The brand new variant being far more contagious is an enormous concern for individuals,” Musgrove informed World Information.

Regardless of the concern, 76 per cent really feel that airways have instituted cheap COVID-19 security measures.

“So it’s not that they really feel just like the airways aren’t doing a superb job of retaining individuals protected. They simply really feel like, inherently, there may be an excessive amount of danger or too many unknowns,” stated Musgrove.

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In an effort to blunt the affect of Omicron, Canada has tightened its journey restrictions.

Beginning this week, Canadians returning house from journeys overseas, no matter size, are required to indicate proof of a detrimental PCR COVID-19 check to re-enter the nation.

On Dec. 15, the federal authorities issued a brand new journey advisory urging Canadians, no matter their vaccination standing, to keep away from non-essential journeys exterior the nation.

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There was an “onslaught of cancellations” as soon as the Stage 3 advisory was reinstated by the federal government, stated Richard Vanderlubbe, president of

Learn extra:

COVID-19: Vacation journey is protected, scientist says — so long as you’re cautious about Omicron

With many schedule modifications, new bookings, and folks sitting on the fence, it’s been very “chaotic”, he stated.

In November, over 9 instances as many Canadian residents travelling overseas returned through Canadian airports, in contrast with that quantity the identical time final yr, in line with Statistics Canada.

Martin Firestone, a journey insurance coverage dealer in Toronto, stated the newest variant and journey advisory has put the brakes again on journey — simply when demand was selecting up once more.

“Generally, in November, previous to Omicron, there was simply full-tilt forward, pent up demand [to travel],” he informed World Information.

“We had been lastly beginning to really feel good once more about journey — with two vaccinations, booster photographs — so this has been a setback,” stated Firestone, who’s the president of Journey Safe.

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Click to play video: 'Travel pivot: Advice from expert on adapting your travel plans'

Journey pivot: Recommendation from skilled on adapting your journey plans

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Future journey plans

Past the vacation season, 45 per cent stated they plan to take a flight within the subsequent six to 12 months, 25 per cent stated they’ll fly inside six months and 22 per cent within the subsequent one to a few months.

Whereas there may be demand and need to journey, the continually altering COVID-19 restrictions are discouraging Canadians from packing their luggage and getting on a aircraft.

Learn extra:

Canadian airports noticed 14-fold enhance in overseas travellers after border opened: report

“The downer is the priority raised by the federal government that you just would possibly find yourself having problem getting house, or border situations might change, or anything,” stated Vanderlubbe.

Nonetheless, for these trying to e book a flight, an amazing 71 per cent say it is going to be for pleasure. Solely 4 per cent stated they’d journey for work functions.

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Almost half the respondents stated they’ll journey inside Canada. Asia and Europe had been the highest worldwide journey locations, the ballot outcomes present.

“There’s a fairly steep drop-off for journey exterior of North America,” stated Musgrove.

“A number of that has to do with their very own consolation with the chance stage and perhaps the concept that they might journey, get sick after which need to quarantine there, [which] clearly turns into far more difficult the additional you’re from house.”

Click to play video: 'Travel confusions amid Omicron variant surge'

Journey confusions amid Omicron variant surge

Journey confusions amid Omicron variant surge

—With information from the Related Press

© 2021 World Information, a division of Corus Leisure Inc.

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