Travelers are now booking restaurants and hotels based on their pandemic policies
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Nearly 2.5 million restaurant jobs were lost, and nearly four in 10 of all U.S. jobs lost since last February were in the hotel industry.
Because of this, many restaurant owners and hoteliers are doing everything they can to lure back customers. From temperature checks upon arrival to personal dining yurts, the hospitality industry has spent millions of dollars trying to convince patrons their businesses are safe.
But during the pandemic, travelers are turning to the internet more than ever for information. And for many people, a hotel's or restaurant's COVID-19 safety policy seems to directly influence whether they make a reservation or book a room.
And there's some data to back this up: An early January Yelp study found consumer interest rose 41% for companies that had COVID-19-specific updates in their listings.
It's one thing for your mimosa refill to be delayed or for the towels in your hotel room to be missing — we are in a pandemic, after all. But one bad review of a business' safety practices could be a deal-breaker for a patron who takes pandemic precautions seriously.