Airports are Getting More Crowded – Sign of Recovery for Travel?
That’s right – The Shoe Shine Guy. When I saw the line of businessmen patiently waiting to get their shoes shined I knew something had changed. The last 4-5 times I was in the SLC airport, the Shoe Shine booth wasn’t even manned. I was contemplating having to find a local cobbler to get my shoes shined!
It reminded me of the major business corridors that I used to get my shoes shined in. Love Field in Dallas where the shuttle to Houston left every 30 minutes, or the Boston-NY shuttle out of Logan. Travelling those corridors, where 90% of the passengers were clearly on business trips – you could almost feel the weight of commerce happening all around you. Those terminals always had a crowded shoe shine stand with a line of people waiting.
I thought of all of this as I sat down and rolled up my pants and the Shoe Shine guy whipped the rag against my freshly shiny boots. It felt good. It gave me hope that maybe, just maybe, the recovery that the press is starting to discuss more and more is really starting… And maybe, leisure travel will start to also rebound. For the sake of all my friends, suppliers and colleagues in the travel industry – I hope so!