As COVID-19 vaccinations gradually sweep the Western world, you might be dusting off your passport and checking Hotels.com for the first time in over a year. You wouldn’t be alone. A new report suggests millions of Americans across the country are currently typing, swiping, and tapping to book long-awaited summer vacation trips, signaling a massive wave of travel about to break.
According to data from Sensor Tower, a mobile app intelligence firm, U.S. downloads for apps in the travel category more than doubled in May 2021 year-over-year, climbing 123% to a total of 24.7 million.
That rise was buoyed largely by commercial airline and hotel apps—neither of which typical smartphone users would install unless they were about to board a flight for that specific airline, or check in to that specific hotel, within a matter of weeks. While the flying and lodging industries were among the hardest hit during the thick of the global coronavirus lockdowns, major U.S. airlines saw the biggest growth within the travel category during May 2021, with downloads swelling 311% year-over-year.