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Travel will return in 2021—but it won’t be any fun

David Huang for Quartz
  • Tripti Lahiri
By Tripti Lahiri

Asia bureau chief


On Dec. 1, 2020, as approval of the first Covid-19 vaccines appeared imminent, a hopeful question popped up on TripAdvisor’s Japan travel forum.

No one can see the future, but does anyone foresee relaxed restrictions on tourism from healthcare workers in the US who receive the vaccine series this December/January? Itching to go to Japan for a two-week vacation in October/November of next year.

It’s been a year since both leisure and business travel came to a screeching halt, as the coronavirus jumped from China to Japan and Thailand, and then spread rapidly around the world. With visitors expected to adhere to strict quarantine rules, or banned from visiting countries altogether, once busy airports and hotels have become desolate.

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