In a year which no one could have predicted, Club Med examines the effect of the pandemic on the winter 2020/2021 season in its eighth annual ski report: A season like no other - Winter sports holidays in a pandemic.

Following the early closure of ski resorts around the world earlier in the year, more than half (51%) of frequent skiers didn’t go on a winter sports holiday last season. While Brits are still intending to get away wherever possible, there are a number of in-resort measures which are now increasingly important factors when they are considering their next holiday. The number one priority for British holidaymakers is that the resort has social distancing measures with 60% saying this is vital, followed by regular cleaning in the resort (50%), accessible hand sanitiser (47%), Covid-19 testing on site (46%) and compulsory use of masks in public places (45%). The study found that 58% of people would now consider working from a ski resort without taking time off to take advantage of being able to work from anywhere.

Climate change, animal welfare and nature preservation are just some of the reasons why sustainability has begun to shape the way we travel. The latent desire for Brits to travel more sustainably is becoming more apparent, with 14% of people citing that eco credentials are a deciding factor when booking a holiday. Specific issues which are important for people when considering a resort is whether they source their food sustainably, with 39% of people saying this was an important decision maker for them. Other items cited as being important were if the resort had a dedicated food recycling program (29%). Over half (52%) of those polled consider a resort’s sustainability credentials before making a booking.

Traditional destinations such as Switzerland (24%), France (23%), Austria (19%) and Italy (18%) top the table of places Brits intend to go on holiday to and over half (52%) said they would still go on a winter sports holiday even if they had to quarantine on arrival back in the UK. A further 60% also said that the newly proposed ‘test and release’ scheme, which would reduce quarantine on return to one week, would make them more likely to book a winter holiday regardless of a country’s Air Bridge status. Covid-19 has also led people to think about alternative means of transportation and almost a third (28%) are considering the ferry as an option and just under one fifth (19%) would consider the Channel Tunnel and train options.