After two years of living with Covid-19, travelers are making big vacation plans again.

But not every type of travel is possible this year, travel professionals said.

That’s because many people have postponed more ambitious holidays during the pandemic – in some cases for two years in a row – leaving little room for new bookings this year.

Nearly half of those who had vacations canceled in 2020 and 2021 plan to take them this year, according to a survey by travel insurance company Berkshire Hathaway Travel Protection. Only 5.5% are pushing these plans forward to next year, and less than 4% plan to cancel altogether, according to the survey of more than 1,500 travelers.

In addition, people make longer trips and book them further in advance. Some fall and winter vacations are already starting to sell out, says Lee Thompson, co-founder of adventure travel company Flash Pack.

But some trips can be fully booked long before then, like these four types of vacations that insiders say fill up quickly for the summer.

African safaris

Booking an African safari 12 to 18 months in advance could be the new norm, says Shannon Kircher, founder of US-based travel agency Compass & Vine.

Many travelers dream of going on safari but don’t pull the trigger because of the amount of planning and money that goes into it, Kircher said.

Tourists photographing a lion in South Africa’s Kruger National Park.

Martin Harvey | The Image Bank | Getty Images

However, the pandemic has “challenged our ideas of delaying meaningful travel,” she said. In addition, more people have the time and money to travel now, due to canceled trips from the past two years, she said.

For travelers returning to the idea of ​​international travel during the pandemic, the privacy and open-air nature of safaris are appealing, she said.

“Safaris are inherently socially distant — you’re generally around more animals than people,” she said.

Travelers choose to visit East Africa from June to October, as the period coincides with the great wildebeest migration, Kircher said, with many extending their trip for a gorilla trekking experience or a beach safari escape. to do with it.

Vacation Rentals in Hawaii

Several locations in Hawaii are at risk of being out of vacancies this summer, says Zander Buteux of rental company VacationRenter.

“If you wait until June to book a trip in June, you have little choice,” he said. “This is especially true for the major cities on each island, such as Honolulu, Lahaina and Kihei.”

Two areas that are still readily available are O’ahu and Hanalei, Buteux said, though he doesn’t expect it to stay that way.

VacationRenter’s Zander Buteux said the average trip to Hawaii in June is seven days, and the average nightly rate for homes that month is $442, up 16% from last year.

Allan Baxter | The Image Bank | Getty Images

Travel to Hawaii has been booming over the past eight months, Buteux said. Business is expected to pick up even more — along with prices — once the state lifts many of its pandemic travel restrictions this month, he said. As of March 26, visitors from the continental United States will no longer need to show their Covid-19 vaccination status or a negative pre-travel Covid-19 test to enter.

Summer isn’t the only time of year that gets booked up quickly, said Phil Jones, CEO of the luxury vacation home Pure Kauai. Easter and Christmas periods are also filling up, he said.

Like Buteux, he said: once “the quarantine restrictions are lifted, we predict a surge in bookings.”

Luxury mansions

Americans still hesitant about international travel are booking luxury off-the-grid vacation spots in the country, Kircher said.

Some well-known ranches are booked more than a year in advance, she said.

The Ranch at Rock Creek in Montana is mostly fully booked through February 2023, and according to their online reservation systems, nearly all weekend slots at Wyoming’s Brush Creek Ranch are full.

Riders embark on a trail in West Yellowstone, Montana.

City cow | E+ | Getty Images

“For most people, the privacy and disjointed nature of gentleman farms is appealing,” Kircher said. Activities such as horseback riding, fly fishing, and white water rafting are outdoors and socially distancing by nature.

Plus, visitors also get a lot of their needs, as “most high-end lodges are truly all-inclusive, meaning food, drinks, and luxury amenities are included,” she said.

Private Yacht Charters

Booking last-minute summer yacht charters is a thing of the past, says Tim Geisler, founder of Grenada-based sailing company Nautilus Sailing.

Many destinations, especially in the Mediterranean, are sold out well in advance, he said.

Greece, Spain and the French island of Corsica are now the most popular charter destinations in the Mediterranean, he said.

“We are noticing that things are starting to return to near pre-pandemic levels,” Geisler said, adding that “80% of our charters are already fully booked in Spain.”

Menorca, one of the Balearic Islands of Spain in the Mediterranean Sea.

Gonzalo Azumendi | Stone | Getty Images

Summer yacht trips to the Mediterranean are popular among Americans because they avoid the Caribbean during this time because it coincides with hurricane season in the area, he said.

The company is seeing an increase in bookings and inquiries from travelers looking to book trips nine to 12 months in advance, limiting inventory down the line, he said.

“The later you make a reservation, the less choice you have when it comes to yacht size, configuration and location, so it’s best to book [at least] six months in advance,” he said.

The company recently launched in Croatia, Geisler said, adding that yachts are available for the summer, but likely not for long.

According to the market research firm Mordor Intelligence, the global yacht charter market, valued at $16.9 billion in 2021, is expected to reach $26.5 billion by 2027, with Europe being the main destination in the summer months.

— Monica Pitrelli of CNBC contributed to this report.

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