It is increasingly apparent that there will be no easy return to Business as Usual. This crisis more profound. It will not be like this, this time.
Covid-19 is a global pandemic, but its impacts and the responses to it have varied significantly around the world. Just as countries imposed lockdown at different times, they are reducing restrictions on different timetables and in different ways. Of course, this reflects the diversity of our world, itself a significant driver of demand for tourism.
The diversity of impacts and responses will make a recovery for travel and tourism significantly more difficult for travel and tourism than for many other sectors. In my last blog, I wrote about how national governments and local authorities are acting to discourage and prevent domestic tourism and people visiting second homes. Destinations have closed to visitors and tourists, the lockdowns have significantly reduced even local travel.
As Justin Francis has pointed out on LinkedIn : Being dependent on the tourism industry for putting food on the table or sending your kids to school is very different to relying on it for your holiday. #Coronavirus will hit the poorest in tourism destinations hardest. And the poorest will be hardest hit as the governments close the airports to defend against importing Covid-19 and the the originating markets closed.
Regularly updated notes and links on Travel and Tourism after Covid-19
05 May Aviation After Covid
The pandemic creates two opportunities for better aviation: (1) Conditional financial support, tied to increased carbon efficiency with enforceable targeted reductions. There need to effective sanctions to ensure compliance with the conditions. (2) Redundant engineers and designers could be employed with scientists in industry and universities to achieve the step change the industry requires to decarbonise. The Royal Society concluded in a report in September 2019 that "Synthetic biofuels and efuels offer a medium (5 to 10 years) and a long term (10+ years), transition pathway to decarbonisation by reducing fossil fuel use in transport modes such as shipping, aviation and heavy-duty vehicles."
04 May 2020 Covid-19: Is this the time to press the reset button?
It is clear that tourism, relying as it does on people spending time away from home, faces some particular challenges as lockdown is loosened.
For tourism to restart the source market and the destination, will both need to have moved beyond lockdown and consumers will need to have both confidence and the financial resources to travel. Travel insurance will not cover Covid-19 risks. Domestic tourism and VFR will likely recover before international, but large countries are likely to maintain restrictions on internal travel.
17 April 2020 Business as Usual – no time soon
For tourism to be possible, the lockdown has to have been lifted at the same time in the source market and the destination. And the traveller needs to be confident that their destination is safe and that there is no risk of being trapped in the destination by a lockdown in the destination or at home. There are likely to be further lockdowns and compulsory quarantine for travellers whenever coronavirus spikes. The travellers will also need to be confident that the risk of catching the virus travelling to the airport, on the plane, coach, train or cruise liner is low. Fear will remain a major deterrent, and travel insurance may continue to be unavailable or expensive for cover for risks associated with the pandemic.
23 March 2020 Resilience and Covid-19
These are tough times for communities around the world, in the midst of a public health emergency. Our sector should recognise the primacy of the risk to life, think about what we can do to help, avoid making the situation worse and avoid special pleading.
Tim Marshall Covid-19 is hardening our borders
Gössling, S., Scott, D. and Hall, C.M., 2020. Pandemics, tourism and global change: a rapid assessment of COVID-19. Journal of Sustainable Tourism, pp.1-20.
Arundhati Roy: ‘The pandemic is a portal’ ‘We can’t go back to normal’: how will coronavirus change the world?
As governments fumbled their coronavirus response, these four got it right. Here's how.
W.H.O., Now Trump’s Scapegoat, Warned About Coronavirus Early and Often