The UN World Tourism Organization estimating a 80% decline in tourism. Many people have lost incomes and are at the risk of joblessness. According to an estimate the risk is spread over 100 million jobs across the world.
Countries like Thailand where 18% of the country’s GDP depends on the tourism are one of the hardest hit. Authorities are reporting that the pandemic can result in a 65% loss of business in tourism.
The popular tourist destination flocks with people throughout the year. On an average a souvenir shop on one of the most popular Khao San road make about $300 a day. But due to the COVID-19 situation the average earning for the day is just $2. The shiny magnets and the stylish hats were common item of sales. But now there is nobody to buy these items.
Thailand had banned all international flights since April. But many people still come to the shops and open in the hope of making a living. With so much at stake many countries are trying to keep the tourism business afloat. But experts warn that even with new initiatives, it could take years for travel to rise to pre-Covid-19 levels. And even when it happens, we might never travel in the same way again.
In Asia, the Chinese will be under the spotlight as they are the largest market for outbound travels. That means Thailand, which attracts around 11 million Chinese tourists a year, could be one of the first to open up travel to China. Thailand is considering opening certain areas to foreign tourists, meaning that visitors are effectively contained in one place, such as an island.
Reopening tourism may mean that countries in Asia will have to do the extensive pandemic prevention drills. To save the future they will have to act today and keep it sustainable at least for the next 2 years so that the tourists can come and flock the streets as it was before the COVID-19 period.