According to TripAdvisor, over two-thirds of Americans are planning to travel this summer. This number is up by 17% compared to March through May of this year. With travel numbers increasing, our post-COVID economy should begin to open, fueled by the summer tourism industry. That’s why our Client Service Intern Julia Palumbo has curated a playlist that celebrates summer with a "work-hard, play-hard” vibe called Vol. 7: Summer InSPIREations, the newest Spire on Spotify playlist.

With many travel restrictions still in place for several international “hot spots,” Americans are flocking to beaches and big cities, for work and for play. People are traveling along the eastern and southern shores of the United States and to cities like Las Vegas, Nevada. (Check out our playlist on LV if you haven’t already!)

In 2020, approximately 28% of Americans took matters into their own hands and traveled through extended road trips, family events, and long weekend getaways. Of those, 71% of them chose a road trip over flying. Unlike last summer, however, the travel industry is prepping for a busy summer. With 39% of Americans fully vaccinated, people are ready to get out and about.

As many Americans gear up to travel, business still needs to get done. The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way employees interact with each other and with clients. Over the past 14 months, there has been a shift in business operations. In March of 2020, companies were forced to transition to remote operations while still conducting business. Employees can message one another and expect an almost immediate reply. Additionally, hopping onto a video or phone call to talk for a few minutes is instantaneous. Remote work provides employees the ability to work almost anywhere.

While several companies are still operating remotely, the ability to work from a vacation spot is easier than it has ever been. A Gartner survey concluded that 82% of company leaders will continue to allow employees to work remotely, at least part of the time, after the pandemic. Working remotely gives employees the ability to travel while still working. And it creates a unique opportunity for business-to-business marketers.

The United States Travel & Tourism industry expects to reach close to $84 billion in 2021. For many years, the tourism market was exponentially increasing in value with the introduction of additional layers of convenience, like booking an entire vacation online.

Over 80% of travel bookings occur online without any human interaction. Companies like Airbnb make it easy to find a place and book the stay on your own. In the United States, Airbnb accounts for 28% of nights booked, and Airbnb projects the site will have 45.6 million users by 2022.

Traveling for trade shows, or trekking with your time off from work? Then grab your suitcase, computer, and open up your Spotify to listen to Spire’s hot summer playlist from our Virginia Tech intern, Julia Palumbo.

JP, what is the name of your album?

The album is called Summer InSPIREation. I tried to incorporate songs that have both a work-hard and a play-hard message. This playlist is formatted so that the songs grow more energetic as you listen deeper into the playlist. Similar to the feeling of anticipation that people feel when prepping for vacation.

How would you describe this mix?

I would say this mix has a summer vibe to it. The songs are tailored to fit this work-hard, play-hard mindset that many people feel during the summer.

What was the inspiration behind it?

The inspiration for this playlist comes from my travels this summer. Moving a thousand miles west has been an exciting recent change. My goal is to make the most out of my summer, both my role as an intern (work hard) and exploring the area of Dallas-Fort Worth (play hard).

What is your favorite song, and why?

My favorite song on the album would have to be the 2011 song “Work Hard, Play Harder” by Montgomery Gentry. For obvious reasons, the song name is the theme of the playlist itself. I love listening to country music, especially during the summer. Having a country song on the playlist called “Work Hard, Play Harder” fits perfectly.

If your playlist was a brand, what would it be and why?

I would say this playlist fits the vibe of the brand Ray-Ban. Ray-Ban’s brand voice is “Classic Cool,” and I don’t know about the rest of you, but my goal for every summer is to live it out in a classic-cool kind of way.

Any specific memory that comes to mind when you listen?

Whenever I listen to this playlist, it reminds me of the times I enjoy with friends and family. I love listening to music but especially during the summer because it is a uniting feature and excites me about the prospect of spending time with friends and family.

What makes your playlist unique?

I think it has a wide range of genres and styles of music that all come together to get people excited to travel while working hard this summer. Happy trails, Texans.

Summer isn’t only beneficial to tourism marketers, but it also creates a unique opportunity for B2B marketers to reach potential customers in new and unique ways.

When the sun sets on this summer playlist, know that Spire will be debuting a new album before those summer nights end. So, stay tuned to the Spire Blog and Spotify Channel for the drop of our next sizzling album.