Unexpected second wave of COVID-19 dampens hopes of homestay and local tourism entrepreneurs

Published on : Monday, April 19, 2021

A rather unexpected second wave of COVID-19 has virtually dampened the hopes of several homestay and local tourism entrepreneurs who are now back to deal with very less options for getting over their business troubles. Many bookings have already been canceled with increasing restrictions of travel and security regulations.

There are tourism entrepreneurs who have even renovated their host families investing large sums, and refurbishing houseboats and expecting additional income.

“The saddest thing is that we will miss this season even amid the spread of the pandemic. The situation was almost the same last year. Those who have made additional investments to make up for the loss are currently hardest hit,”said T. Saleesh, a rural tourism entrepreneur from Koorachundu. He said that many small business owners who suffered huge losses after the outbreak of the pandemic are now finding it difficult to compensate for the loss in the current situation.

Romeo Thomas, a young host family entrepreneur from Karikandanpara, said that the entire company is going through an unprecedented crisis and uncertainty. Mr. Thomas, who recently renovated his homestay with many novel additions, lamented that the number of visitors has fallen drastically and that he is facing great trouble finding maintenance costs due to limited bookings.

Those who earned their livelihood selling homemade food to local and international tourists near tourist establishments are also facing disaster with ongoing fear of a pandemic. Many of them stopped doing business with sudden drop in visitor numbers.

According to representatives of the Ministry of Tourism, the state government’s tourism institutions are also witnessing a sharp decline in sales. With public parks, ecotourism spots, and beach destinations expected to remain closed, it will definitely affect revenue in the form of entrance fees and other special fees.

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