Skift Take

Travel is the most consequential industry in the world, as the world is now finding out due to lack of travel. Skift aims to be the most consequential company deciphering this and the path ahead. Support our work.

March 14, 2020.

The day we will always remember from here on out as The Day the World Stopped Traveling. One by one every major country in the world affected by coronavirus is closing down its borders, and this weekend it seems to have accelerated across almost every section of the world map. Although we are seeing positive signs of recovery in the earliest hit regions of China, soon I expect to see a headline in The Atlantic, always known for its definitive, didactic headlines: World Closes Border.

These are existential times for the global travel industry. Since the start of Skift, I have been beating the drum with these two lines to anyone who would listen (and if you have ever seen me speak, in *every* speech I have ever given): Travel is the world’s largest industry, let’s start acting like it! Travel is the geopolitical center of the world, deal with it!

Well, now the world has surely heard in the deafening silence of a grounded planet. Travel is the most consequential industry in the world, as it’s now finding out due to lack of travel.

As a company in travel, Skift is in the eye of the Category 10 storm while also covering the story of this storm nonstop, 24/7. We are covering the most consequential moment of our lifetime, and we aim to be the most consequential company deciphering this for the global travel industry and for the world to understand what is happening in travel right now, why, and what the path ahead is.

Our Editorial and Research teams are doing some of the best work today. They’re not just covering the news but also giving context and insights into *everything* happening while putting Skift’s accountability lens on this industry as we always do. Support our quality journalism by reading it, sharing it, and subscribing to our deeper dive subscription services.

We have multiple ways of accessing our coverage:

  1. The Skift Coronavirus Liveblog has been active for two weeks now, covering all the impact on various parts of the global travel industry, in real time. It’s *the* most extensive resource on travel — bookmark it. This coverage will be crucial for you for months to come.
  2. Our reporters are writing original stories, analysis, and opinion you won’t find anywhere else, including these brilliant pieces from our Editorial team: Rosie Spinks on the cruise industry, Jay Shabat on the airline sector, and Andrew Sheivachman on the travel industry associations’ response. Our full team reporting is here, and if you are a daily newsletter subscriber, you will get these stories in your inbox daily.
  3. Skift Airline Weekly, the Economist of Aviation Media, is *the* weekly newsletter giving perspective on the monumental changes ongoing in airlines during this crisis. Subscribe today and support our level-headed analysis that 90 percent of airline CEOs in the world read.
  4. EventMB is covering the giant meteor that has hit the events industry, with both reports and analysis. If you are in the events sector and want to take your event virtual, EventMB is hosting a webinar called Pivot to Virtual, a can’t-miss free online event this Wednesday, March 18. Sign up now.
  5. Skift Research is providing long-range understanding of the travel sector that will prove invaluable as you work on your long-term planning. We are amping up the frequency of our research reports to one a week for the coming weeks.
  6. We are working on a series of online events we are calling Travel’s Path Forward. Each two-hour virtual event will focus on recovery in sectors such as corporate travel, tourism, travel marketing, travel agents, and more to come. Keep an eye out for announcements on and through our daily newsletter.

There is a lot more to come from the Skift team; our value will be even more apparent in the recovery phase. I have said in the past that travel is the most progressive expression of human curiosity, and I have zero doubt that the sector will recover and the world will bounce back to traveling, even if it takes a while to get back up and return to pre-coronavirus traveler numbers.

As a small business, we are not immune to the hurt everyone in travel is going through. Support independent journalism and research in the world’s most consequential sector by supporting Skift. The sector deserves the serious and sustained coverage we provide.

Rafat Ali
Founder & CEO, Skift
[email protected]


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Our daily coverage of the global travel industry. Written by editors and analysts from across Skift’s brands.

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