COVID-19 Recources & Updates

Hub for advice, resources and updates regarding the impact of COVID-19 on tour operators

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Intelligent Reopening Webinar

 Learn best practices and tips to help you reopen in today’s “new normal” with Jon Peahl, safety & hygiene expert and founder of SanSee Systems. Plus check out even more helpful resources from the webinar slides here.
 

Skift IDEA Awards

Promote your ideas for the tour sector to move forward, and celebrate those of other industry players in regards to innovation, design, and guest experiences. Skift IDEA Award winners will be announced in September.
 

Access to Capital

PPP Loan Forgiveness Guidance: What You Need to Know Now

Read the SBA’s long-awaited instructions on how PPP loan forgiveness should be calculated, and how to claim forgiveness of your own PPP loan. Plus, brush up on the latest updates of this federal aid with SBA FAQ here[US operators only]

Access to PPP Loans through Womply

There is still over $100bn in funds available from the second wave of the PPP program. If you are not having luck with your application through a larger bank, or you never finished your application, it’s not too late. We strongly recommend that you apply through Womply immediately. Remember, you don’t need to worry about duplicate applications; the SBA will only process one per business. [US operators only]

Update on SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loans

  • The SBA is no longer accepting EIDL applications from businesses within the tourism industry. However, the SBA is still processing its backlog of applications, so operators who have already applied could still receive some good news in the near future.
  • Unlike PPP loans, you can still use EIDL funding even if you’re already on unemployment.
  • There are no restrictions on using EIDL funds to make back payments on other loans - even those that have been deferred.
  • If you’ve applied for an EIDL, you should wait to hear updates from the SBA via email.

EU Leaders Approve Half-Trillion Bailout Package

EU leaders agreed on Thursday, April 23, to draw up plans for a recovery fund worth 540 billion euros ($580 billion), set to be available by June 1. Details such as how it will be distributed have yet to be determined.

Hourly Job Alternative: Become a Driver & Deliver with DoorDash

With furloughs becoming the norm across industries, help staff, friends, or family find flexible, convenient earnings opportunities through Peek’s initiative with DoorDash. DoorDash is currently looking for drivers across hundreds of cities – get started now here.

Google's $800M+ Aid to Support Businesses and Crisis Response

Read Google’s announcement to provide aid to small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs). Its commitment includes a $200M investment fund to help provide small businesses with access to capital, $340M in Google Ad credits for SMBs, and more.

$100M in Cash Grants and Ad Credits from Facebook

Browse the aid Facebook is providing for up to 30,000 eligible small businesses in over 30 countries. Apply here

Best Practices

Refunds Reserve: Easy, Automated Refunds in Peek Pro

We’ve added key automations to our new refunds process, to allow a smoother and more streamlined experience. Learn how it can help your business deal with refunds quicker and create a better guest experience.

How to Price Your Virtual Events

 With virtual events here to stay, learning how to monetize them is essential for the survival and recovery of the industry. Cover the best strategies for pricing event access here.

How Virtual Tours Can Help You Reopen Your Doors

 If you’re still deciding whether virtual content is right for you, this blog has all the information you need to make the call; as well as tips on how virtual content can shape and upgrade your current and future experiences, and attract more customers to your business.

The Ultimate Guide to Instagram for Business

With local and staycation tourism on the rise, engage this audience by effectively using Instagram to market your products to a more targeted and engaged demographic.

The 20 Questions You Need to Ask at the Tech Demo for Your Virtual Event

Determine which questions you should be asking to help you find the best virtual event tech and tools for your business needs.

How the Attractions Industry Can Regain Guests’ Trust and Confidence

The COVID crisis has made it vital for operators to assure guests of cleanliness standards in effective ways, without adding any additional fear or anxiety. Learn the best ways to do this with Experience expert Joshua Liebman.

The U.S. Travel Industry Unveils Guide for Reopening

Stay up-to-date on guidelines for travel in today's "new normal" and learn the best practices all sectors of business should embrace to restore travelers’ confidence.

Peek's Account Tuneup Checklist

To help you make the most of this slow period, we’ve compiled a checklist of key business-optimizing actions you can take to help you prepare for the future.

The Role Destination Marketing Can Play in the Recovery of Events

Learn strategic ways Destination Marketing Organizations can adapt for recovery in today’s rapidly changing landscape.

Beginner's Guide to Successful Facebook Ads

Discover three important considerations for creating an effective Facebook ad campaign in Social Media Examiner’s recent article.

Financial Strategies for Operators During Economic Uncertainty 

Gain insights on the best business tactics to employ during a downturn in Adventure Travel Trade Association’s free brief-style report.

How 4 Event Brands Tackled Covid-19 Crisis Communications

Learn four key strategies for responding to a crisis, gleaned from examining event companies with particularly effective communications to attendees and stakeholders.

13 Ways Businesses Can Use SEO & Marketing to Combat Coronavirus Impact

Check off the Search Engine Journal’s SEO & Marketing tasks to do now for a faster recovery.

Why Companies Turn to Digital Marketing to Survive COVID-19

Read why Forbes says an effective digital marketing strategy is the “deciding factor” in whether companies will make it through the tough times ahead and get a free digital audit of your website from 9068 Creative here.

Advice from Industry Veterans

Three Ways Tour Operators Can Grow During the COVID-19 Crisis

Milwaukee Food Tours share the actionable steps they took to pivot to sustain operations and payroll as they faced zero revenue during the lockdown.

Industry Experts Offering One-on-One, Free Consulting Help 

Leading tour industry players have come together through Tourmaggeddon to volunteer free consulting sessions for others in our industry. Set up a session with the link above.

Wildebeest's Essential Marketing Advice for Tour & Activity Operators 

Read about the actionable steps operators can take to mitigate the damage caused by today’s COVID crisis and prepare for the industry’s eventual recovery.

Navigating a Crisis: Arival's 5-Step Action Plan for Tour Operators 

Read the industry giant’s advice on minimizing unnecessary expenses, creating a cash flow forecast, diversifying current and future revenue-generating activities, and more.

'Attracting Tourists After Troubled Times' Blog

Regroup and prepare your business for when the dust settles and bookings ramp up with the tips and insights from Stephanie Fiero of Tourism Tiger in this guest blog. 

Examples of Operators Adapting

Virtual Food and Drink Experiences 

Our recent favorites: The Table Less Traveled’s live cooking classes with featured chefs and home cooks via Zoom; Boutique events company EETTAFEL’s online cooking and wine classes, featuring conversations with a life coach; Avital’s Remote Culinary Teambuilding, Virtual Chefinars, and Virtual Mixologist classes.

Virtual Yoga Classes

Sup Yo, which usually offers paddleboard yoga classes, hiking excursions, and retreats, is engaging customers with online yoga classes. Namaste in Nature has adapted similarly, switching up its former mediation and yoga hikes with online meditation and yoga classes on YouTube

Online Escape Room Experience 

Trap’t Escape Room Adventures has created an at-home puzzle hunt to bring the escape room experience right to customers’ living rooms.

Other Adapted Activities

Browse a wide range of adapted activities across the industry, including everything from virtual tours to “Shelter-in Style” kits to “Food Tours in a Box. 

Collaborations with Community Foundations

Check out how our partner ‘Your Biker Gang’ has teamed up with the Austin Community Foundation to help raise the funds needed to protect local businesses feeling the effects of the virus.

Adapted Refund Policies

Keep track of how the industry is adapting their refund policies in response to COVID-19 with this travel company refund tracker.

Stay Updated and Connected

Travel’s Reopening: A Global Timeline 

Stay up-to-date on the reopening of various travel sectors around the world, in order to better understand the when and the where of how the reopening and potential recovery of travel goes from here.

Small Businesses Could Get More Time to Spend Emergency Loans 

The House is planning a vote next week on a bill that would extend the deadline for spending Paycheck Protection Program loans and make other changes to the $670 billion program. Learn more here.

Travel Changed After 9/11; Here’s How It May Look After the COVID-19 Pandemic Finally Recedes

Gain insights from industry experts on what will restore confidence for people to begin traveling once the COVID-19 pandemic finally recedes as well as where and how they'll travel as tourism slowly bounces back.

Is Virtual a Wake-Up Call For The Event Industry?

As gatherings of large groups remain restricted, read why Event believes virtual events are not a temporary fixture in the industry and why they’re likely to continue into 2021.

The Winners & Losers of a Staycation World Ahead

With domestic travel set to return first and tourists likely to stay local for a while, learn which countries stand to benefit in Skift’s recent article.

Arival’s Latest Coronavirus Pulse Study

Operator bookings are down 85% year to date, reports the study. However, learn why the data also reflects a glimmer of optimism as countries work toward stabilizing and reopening.

Reopening America: A State-By-State Breakdown of Coronavirus Restrictions

US governors have taken vastly different tactics in developing plans to reopen businesses in their states and remove social-distancing restrictions. Stay updated on changing policies here.

What Do Post-Coronavirus Events Look Like?

Explore what events will look like after lockdowns have been lifted. In this article, Event discusses the key questions: “Which conditions are needed for events to happen?”, “What type of events will happen?”, and “What will those events look like?”

#Tourismstrong

Check out the new site tour operators have created to join with others in the industry, share free resources, and provide inspiration for one another.  

Tourmageddon: A COVID-19 Resource and Advice Hub

Find more resources, top tips, recovery plans, and more, edited by industry experts, Alex Bainbridge (Autoura / DestinationCTO), Peter Syme and Chris Torres. Sign up to receive email updates or follow them on Twitter @TourmageddonH.

Facebook Forums for Tour Operators

Join the groups Tour Operators UnitedTourpreneur for Tour Operators/Tour Professionals, andTour Strategy if you haven’t already for discussion, advice, and support.

Facebook Forums for Tour Operators

Join the groups Tour Operators UnitedTourpreneur for Tour Operators/Tour Professionals, andTour Strategy if you haven’t already for discussion, advice, and support.

Appeal to Your Local Community

'Driving Community Support' Blog

Learn tips on how to help your community best support your business. We’ve also included email templates and social media posts in this blog to help you get these campaigns up and running, without having to start from scratch.

11 Ways Your Community Can Help Travel Companies

See examples of how your community can help businesses like yours in this article by Linsey Stevens from Travel Awaits.

Webinar Recordings

Arival: How to In-House Your SEO

829 Studios’ co-founder Peter Ross delves into the search essentials every operator should be doing now. Learn how to manage it all in-house without spending a dime.

International Tour Operator Roundtable Webinar

 Listen as leading industry players from around the globe discuss how COVID has affected their businesses, how markets have responded to virtual activities, and which areas are starting to open up to tourism.

How to Design, Launch and Sell Online Tours & Experiences 

Gain a practical guide to creating and selling online products and services with Kelsey Tonner and Ingo Albrecht from Be a Better Guide & Online Tourism Academy.

Workshop + Q&A: How to Take Your Experiences Online

Learn how to set up a virtual tour from scratch, which aspects are likely to make it successful, and more with Junket (a virtual tour software provider).

Tour Operator Roundtable I & II

Delve into some of today’s crucial questions: how to access capital, how to adapt tours or activities, how to best communicate with customers, and more. Access the recording of Part I with the 'Learn More' button below and of Part II here.

'Planning for Recovery: Essential Marketing Advice' Webinar

Listen as the co-founders of Wildebeest discuss how to market your business in these extreme circumstances, prepare your operations for recovery, and more.

'The CARES Act Explained' Webinar, Pt. I & II

Make sense of the options on offer through the CARES Act, with Mike Lousteau, General Counsel for ServiceTitan. Find the recording to Part I above and to Part II here. Plus, access all the helpful links mentioned on these presentation slides. [U.S.-based operators only]