Resilience means the ability to recover quickly from difficulties, to spring back or recover from misfortune or disaster. Tourism businesses and destinations face resilience challenges, they need to be adaptive.
- over-dependence on one source market or company – for example, Thomas Cook link
- recession, over-dependence on tourism, in the Caribbean, tourism, accounts for 40% of GDP and 13.4% of employment.
- health issues and pandemics Sars
- extreme weather – typhoons, hurricanes, heat waves, droughts, fire, flood
- climate change and rising sea levels more
- man-made disasters, pollution, beach closures
UNWTO “assists members to assess and mitigate risks related to tourism. Furthermore, to develop, plan and implement crisis management systems that will reduce the impact of and assist in the recovery from crises” It references travel advisories and health information, the establishment of effective crisis management systems (CMS) and emphasises as of “very high importance .. the integration of travel and tourism into the national emergency structures and procedures.”
Emergency planning for tourism has to be integrated with the work of local, national and international governments and agencies.
Dr Stefan Hartman at the European Tourism Futures Institute suggests that there are six ingredients in a resilient destination: diversity, connectivity, shared responsibility, environmental sensitivity, leaning & reflexivity, think adaptively. more
There is a business self-assessment Tourism Resilience Index tool developed for New England by the Wells National Estuarine Research Reserve, Kennebunk-Kennebunkport-Arundel Chamber of Commerce and the town of Kennebunkport.