Olympics miserably fails to promote Brazil tourism

Published on : Friday, July 8, 2016

Brazil’s tourism authorities and British politician Boris Johnson had predicted that Olympics 2016 would boost the tourism industry of Brazil and that Brazil would have a tough time accommodating the thousands of people who would throng here along with the athletes.


However, the Olympiads in Athens (2004) and Sydney (2000) witnessed a sharp decline in the number of travelers both during and post-Olympics.


Similarly, studies revealed that London would also see a significant drop in visitors in the peak holiday season, during the Olympics in the year 2012. Tour operators had started advising holidaymakers against travelling to London a year in advance of the Olympics on account of the exorbitant hotel rates and air fares. Moreover, London would be in a mess due to the several security lockdowns during the Olympics.


The studies marked a contrast to the opinion of the authorities of Heathrow Airport who claimed that during the three days prior to and after the Olympics, all the seats of the flights to and from the airport of Heathrow would be filled. Boris Johnson echoed this opinion as he also declared that the roads of London would be really busy during the Olympics.


However, what actually happened was entirely the opposite. The Tube was comparatively emptier and Heathrow was more peaceful than the usual days. The shops, restaurants and tourist destinations in London saw sales dropping to a large extent.


Rio de Janeiro, Brazil experienced a similar scenario. The Brazilian government had issued a press release a few weeks ago that said that the hotel industry has been witnessing 90% occupancy rates thanks to the Olympics 2016. But, the reality was that the rooms on the five-star hotels were all booked, but then a large number of beds were available in the modest hotels.


Also, Brazil is embroiled in certain other issues that might adversely affect its tourism sector. First of all, it is the outbreak of the deadly Zika virus that might pose serious threats to pregnant women and also their partners.


Secondly, Brazil, just like the UK, is knee-deep into economic and political crisis. This is the reason why the sales of tickets have been miserable this time.

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