When is tourism sector going to rebound? Despite countries opening tourist destinations, this is a question that is doing the rounds for the last many months. The UN World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) has said that a rebound in international tourism was possible in 2021, especially in the third quarter. However, some experts say that this was not possible and world tourism was likely to get re-energised only in 2022.
One of main hindrance for the recovery is that many countries are still to revoke travel restrictions. Apart from this, travellers are also not confident of travelling. The experts in the field also note that lack of coordinated response among countries to ensure harmonized protocols and coordinated restrictions have also led to the same.
First half of 2020
The latest UNWTO World Tourism Barometer shows a fall of 70 per cent in international arrivals for the first eight months of 2020. The world organisation said that 81 per cent of dip in international tourism was seen in July and 79 per cent in August. These two months are the busiest months and the peak of the Northern Hemisphere summer season. About 700 million fewer arrivals was noticed till August when compared to the same period in 2019. The UNWTO says that the loss may come to 730 billion dollars in export revenues,
Meanwhile UNWTO Secretary General Zurab Pololikashvili said that the decline in international tourism will have social and economic consequences. Millions would be rendered jobless, Pololikashvili said and underlined the urgent need to restart tourism in a timely and coordinated manner.
Asia and the Pacific were the first regions to suffer the impact of Covid 19. They saw a decrease of 70 percent in international tourist arrivals. Africa and the Middle East reported 69 per cent decrease. Europe and America had a drop of 65 per cent of tourist arrivals.
Though many countries recovered from the fall out, it was only short lived as many of the reintroduced travel restrictions. Travel remains uncertain because of the uncertainty o the pandemic. Moreover, travellers are also less optimistic to travel.