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Decatur travel agent beginning to book trips; some travelers still hesitant after coronavirus

A travel agent in Decatur is slowly starting to gain more customers.

Posted: May 19, 2020 9:54 PM
Updated: May 19, 2020 10:42 PM

The coronavirus brought several businesses to a stand still, including the travel industry. However, as the state begins to reopen, agents in North Alabama are starting to slowly get more customers. 

Last year was a record setter for Roger McWhorter's business, Elite Travel. The future of this industry was looking bright, until coronavirus. 

He said he is likely losing a year's worth of income. However, McWhorter said he is still optimistic.

"I haven't had any business until a long time, until just recently," McWhorter said.

Since the end of February, It has just been McWhorter inside his building. He had to lay off his entire staff. Nearly all of his booking have been cancelled. 

"I feel like July, August, I'll be getting calls again, but its going to take a little while for people to really feel comfortable," McWhorter said. 

He said just this past week, he has booked a few Fall trips to Europe. However, a lot of people are still holding off to see how the pandemic plays out.

"The big deal right now of course is at what point can people fly out of here," McWhorter said. "Italy just reopened its doors to people in the EU, but not to international travel."

McWhorter said the height of his booking season is Janurary through June. Right now, he has accepted the fact he is not making much profit, but said as a business owner, he has to stay positive.

"We are a society that loves our vacations, loves our time off if we are in a position to afford to do so," McWhorter said. 

He said when it comes to safety precautions, he is expecting hotels and resorts to operate as usual, before the pandemic. 

He said by the time people travel again, he believes things will be more normal, so there won't be a need more more protocols. 

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