It’s difficult to say when exactly the global COVID-19 pandemic will end. With vaccines rolling around the world, it looks like the end might finally be within reach. Yet, there probably won’t ever be a true return to life before the pandemic. When it comes to what to expect post-COVID-19, there will likely be a mix of new and old habits. COVID-19 has affected everyone’s daily life to some degree, and some changes are here to stay.
While we cannot truly be sure of what a world on the other side of the pandemic will look like, here are some things we can reasonably expect to see.
It’s been a long-time trend, but more businesses have shifted online recently. Retail and in-person shopping has been on a decline for a while now. There are some exceptions like major retailers such as Wal-Mart, or Target, but even those companies have had to compete with major e-commerce retailers like Amazon.
Online shopping surged in 2020 compared to the previous year, and it’s not surprising given that people were limited in how they could shop in person. Not only that, many businesses were forced to shift operations online. Even traditional in-person businesses like museums and live theater performances had to get creative in generating business online to stay afloat.
Of course, there will still be things you’ll want to experience in-person, like concerts, amusement parks, and the aforementioned museums and live theater. But, many businesses realize they can operate online without having a dedicated office space.
More business closures in the post-COVID-19 world
As sad as it is, we can expect to see more businesses close.
It’s been tough for many in-person establishments like restaurants or hotels that have had to operate at a limited capacity. For some businesses, they’ve been barely scraping by, and they may not be able to continue to operate even after the pandemic ends.
Even big businesses like Macy’s, GNC, and Pier 1 Imports took a hit and had to close many stores. Others have gone bankrupt. Granted, some of these companies had been on the decline for years, but the COVID-19 pandemic worsened their situation.
There might also be a lack of demand for certain businesses post-COVID-19 pandemic. For example, gyms have had to operate at limited capacities in some parts of the United States, and people have had to find alternate solutions to exercise.
Some people have instead created home gyms to feel more safe and comfortable while working out. If a significant portion of the population no longer pays for a gym membership, more sports facilities may close.
Travel will still be tricky
Restrictions on worldwide travel and trips within one’s own country exist, and for good reason, during the pandemic. Helping fight the spread of the virus is paramount for everyone’s health and safety.
Thus, there have been flight cancelations and other shifts that have put companies in the travel and tourism sector under mounting pressure. With so many restrictions, it has also been tough for those who have to go long distances for business to keep up with the constantly changing travel restrictions.
Moving forward, as these rules and regulations lift, there is likely to still be a reluctance to travel. There will still be precautions for people to take, including showing proof of vaccination and testing. This process could result in much longer boarding times than before.
There will probably still be some form of social distancing in effect. It probably won’t be to the extremes it has been, but some things like standing 6-feet apart may still be in effect.
On the positive side, travel restrictions will most likely loosen, and you probably won’t have to quarantine for as long, if at all. Flights might also allow for more people to board.
Post-COVID-19 work habits
The way we work will change quite a bit. Since many have had to adapt to working from home, the odds are good that there will still be a demand from people who have been able to do remote work during the pandemic.
Would every person shift to remote work? It isn’t very likely, but some businesses might adopt is a hybrid model. This means that on certain days people will work from home and other days will be in the office.
Working from home will require reliance on modern technologies to keep remote teams in close communication. Zoom and other video conferencing tools will continue to be in use.
These changes aren’t necessarily bad either. If you’re raising kids or taking care of a loved one, there are plenty of benefits to working from home. Some folks have been asking for this type of work environment for years.
Working remotely also allows people to move out of high-cost areas like San Francisco and New York into more affordable ones. It’s possible that you might never meet some of your coworkers in-person moving forward.
A few last words
A post-COVID-19 world will feel strange in comparison to what life was like before the pandemic. But it will probably not be as stressful or weird as things have been. With that said, it will still take some time to get used to it.
At the very least, it will feel hopeful and nice to have some sense of normality return.
About today’s writer
Trevor McDonald is a freelance content writer who has a passion for writing. He’s written a variety of education, travel, health, and lifestyle articles for many different companies. In his free time, you can find him running with his dog, playing his guitar, or outside enjoying any type of fitness activity imaginable.