Published on : Tuesday, July 27, 2021
In the history of tourism, the biggest challenge related to COVID-19 continues into a second year. As per UNWTO data, between January and May 2021, international tourist arrivals were 85 per cent below 2019 levels.
In spite of a slight upward trend in May, the emergence of Covid-19 variants and the constant infliction of restrictions are negatively influencing on the revival of international travel. In the meantime, domestic tourism has rebounded in several countries of the world.
The recent UNWTO data shows that in the first five months of 2021, world destinations recorded 147 million less arrivals on international level compared to the same time last year. Nevertheless, the data has also pointed to a relatively small improvement in May, with arrivals dropping by 82 per cent (versus May 2019), after falling by 86 per cent in April. As some countries have started easing down restrictions, this slight upward trend has emerged as a result of this and consumer confidence grew slightly.
To quote Zurab Pololikashvili, Secretary General, UNWTO, “Accelerating the pace of vaccination worldwide, working on effective coordination and communication on ever changing travel restrictions while advancing digital tools to facilitate mobility will be critical to rebuild trust in travel and restart tourism.”
International tourism is gradually getting better, though revival remains uneven. Rising concerns over the third wave of Delta variant have made many countries to re-impose restrictive measures. Besides, lack of clear information on entry requirements could keep on influencing the resumption of international travel in a negative way during the northern hemisphere’s summer season.