Bill Gates: People Will Travel 'Dramatically Less' in Post-COVID World
Billionaire says commuting and business travel will be reduced
The COVID-19 pandemic will fundamentally change the way travel for business and commute for work, even after the pandemic is over, Bill Gates predicts.
Gates told Andrew Ross Sorkin during the New York Times’ Dealbook conference on Tuesday that he foresees fundamental changes in the way people travel for work.
“My prediction would be that over 50% of business travel and over 30% of days in the office will go away,” the Microsoft founder declared.
Moving forward, Gates predicted that there will be a “very high threshold” for conducting business trips now that working from home is more feasible, according to CNBC.
However, some companies may be more extreme with their efforts to reduce in-person meetings than others, he said.
Gates and his foundation have been working to find ways to deliver a coronavirus vaccine to the majority of the world's population.
The philanthropist and tech executive, who appeared alongside Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla during the live-streamed conference on Tuesday, said he’s already held five virtual roundtables this year with pharma executives — a meeting that’s usually held in-person in New York.
“We will go to the office somewhat, we’ll do some business travel, but dramatically less,” Gates said.
Elsewhere during the summit, Gates discussed the recent shift in social media platforms as users leave behind Facebook and Twitter over censorship concerns.
Post-election, many conservatives have been heading to Parler, a conservative social media app which bills itself as a free speech Twitter-spin off.
However, billionaire Bill Gates insists that he isn’t a fan of the platform, calling some of its content “crazy stuff.”
If somebody goes to Parler, they are saying, “I like crazy stuff,” said Gates, the second richest man in the world.
“If you want Holocaust denial, hey, Parler is going to be great for you,” Gates said.
Gates said there needs to be regulation to manage "misinformation" on social media platforms.
“Facebook services are the primary way people access news and they get drawn in to more and more extreme stories, including some of these anti-vaccines or conspiracy things,” Gates said at DealBook.
“So that person who hasn’t started out saying, ‘I want crazy stuff,’ they get drawn down and see things that are very titillating and that is where it is almost a human weakness,” Gates said.