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After The Pandemic: Britons think commuting to work and holidays abroad will change significantly

Written by on 1st June 2020

The world will never be the same again after coronavirus, and a majority of Britons wouldn’t want to go back to the way things were before, a poll for Sky News has revealed.

Coronavirus has been a devastating experience for so many in society, but collectively the experience of lockdown has provided some glimpses of what could be done better, new research shows.

Few people feel the lockdown has put a barrier between them and their partners, family and friends – and many feel closer to loved ones as a result of the pandemic.

The poll throws up all sorts of major societal shifts, with significant numbers thinking people will never return to commuting to the workplace and trailing round shops

Just over a third even wonder whether foreign holidays are a thing of the past.
Most people will not miss socialising by Zoom and Skype, however.
In an exclusive poll by YouGov for Sky News’ After The Pandemic series, we discover a nation asking whether now might be a moment for a shake-up.
Only 27% of people think life will be much the same as it was before the pandemic, while far more – 59% – said it will be significantly different.
A majority, 57%, embrace this change with enthusiasm, saying they want the world to be different.

Of those who wanted to see a changed world, the largest proportion was baby boomers – those aged 50 to 64.
Asked what issue was looming largest for the world after the pandemic, climate change took a clear lead with 33% of the vote.
Preventing future pandemics came second but received less than half this tally, with 15% of the vote, while tackling poverty was chosen by 14% and the rise of China as a superpower by 11%.
The issue of migration and refugees – which topped the nation’s list of concerns ahead of the EU referendum – was on 8%.
Tackling international terrorism, which scarred the first decade of the century, was on just 3%.
Many people expect the structure of their lives to change after the pandemic.
While 40% expect people to resume commuting to the workplace, a larger group – 47% – anticipate working from home will continue.
In another age divide, the over-50s say people are more likely to work from home in future compared to the under-50s.

People are more ambivalent over a return to overseas holidays.
Some 49% think people will go back to having overseas holidays, while 37% believe people will stop having holidays abroad.

There are signs that socialising over the internet will reduce once the pandemic is over, as 51% think we will go back to socialising in person much more.
Only 30% anticipate Zoom or Skype will remain dominant.