In January, the experiential travel platform Peek celebrated $1 billion in bookings since its founding in 2012. Then the novel coronavirus hit. Ruzwana Bashir, founder of the San Francisco-based startup, watched business vanish overnight. “By April, we were at zero,” she says. “With America in lockdown, people couldn’t experience anything. Things looked dire.”
Fast-forward through the turbulent spring and early summer months, which saw travel slow to a crawl, and now Bashir is telling a different story. Hers is one of the few nimble travel businesses that have found themselves booming; in July, Peek saw $50 million in bookings and has continued to break monthly sales records since, as travelers eagerly look for exciting ways to explore their own backyards.
The few thriving corners of the travel industry offer hope of a rebound and the possibility of traveling safely, even during an uncertain period. They may stoke your wanderlust or allow you to explore safely and securely—but they’re also good reminders that the travel industry still means big business.
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