Industry Update
Opinion Article 6 May 2021

Pandemic practices we want to keep

Call them silver linings in a very dark cloud: Adjustments made as a result of the pandemic have also produced benefits for society.

By Arnie Weissmann, Editor in Chief, Travel Weekly

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It has been noted that the pandemic accelerated existing trends that had previously advanced at a leisurely pace. Although there's much about the pandemic we want to leave behind, it's hard to ignore the innovations and incremental improvements to daily life that are byproducts of the Covid era.

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I began asking friends and family what pandemic-related changes they hope outlive the lockdowns, quarantines, mandates and restrictions. QR codes for menus and hand-sanitizing stations at restaurants and shops were the most popular responses.

But some were fairly location-specific, such as the hope that Mexican restaurants continue to provide individual, rather than communal, bowls of salsa on the table to ensure not only equal distribution of salsa but eliminate concerns about fellow diners double-dipping.

People seem to like new ways to open doors. Someone observed that lever handles have increasingly replaced knobs, allowing people to push down with the back of their hand or elbow rather than grip and turn. Another person mentioned foot pulls at the bottom of bathroom doors; I noticed the Delta Sky Club in Salt Lake City took it one step further, adding "wave to open" sensors on their restroom doors.

To my surprise, the retention of mask-wearing came up a few times. Going forward, "it won't seem weird to wear one during allergy season," one friend offered. Another said, "I'll keep wearing them on planes because it seems the only time I get sick is after a long flight.

"Besides," she added, "I bought too many masks."

Click here to read the full article on travelweekly.com

Arnie Weissmann

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