London…The days and weeks immediately following the High Holy Days usually is the period of the onset of the marketing effort for the upcoming Passover holiday. Program operators finalize their contracts, complete all logistical arrangements and begin their advertising in earnest. Some operators feared that the shutdown of Passover programs in 2020 would encourage many people to forego participating in such programs in the future. But travel experts tell Kosher Today that interest remains strong in organized kosher programs throughout the year. According to Raphi Bloom of the popular on-line site Totallyjewishtravel.com, there was somewhat of a resurgence during the just concluded Sukkot holiday. Two programs in Cancun had 750 guests in total and even had to deal with Hurricane Diana for two days. Avi and Belinda Netzer had 180 guests in Rimini, Italy. Nearly 400 people spent Sukkot as part of the KMR program at the Phoenician in Scottsdale AZ.
Several thousand people spent the holiday in Orlando, most in privately rented homes. Says Mr. Bloom: “We saw significant Sukkot traffic from people looking to book – even during Chol Hamoed for the second days.” Travel agents say that travel to winter locations like Miami appears to have resumed and despite being slammed with an impactful second wave of Covid, Israel is planning to reopen its tourism business, including the resumption of flights by El Al to key cities in Europe and North America. This despite Israel’s continued struggle with trying to contain the Coronavirus. E & S Tours is planning a Thanksgiving Weekend Tour of Dubai and Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates. How this will all impact the upcoming Passover holiday season remains to be seen.