Tourism is among the fundamental contributors to the GDP of any economy. For this and many other reasons, the effect of Covid-19 on the tourism sector is one we cannot downplay. As we all are aware, the onset of the pandemic led to a plethora of restrictions in a bid to combat the spread of the monstrous respiratory virus. One of these restrictions was the cessation of movement, not to mention the bans on international travel. During the lockdown periods, even domestic travel was heavily controlled and restricted to some extent. As a result, the travel industry suffered a huge blow.
For workers in the tours and travel industry, it was a nightmare in the making because a huge proportion either lost their jobs or had to take huge pay cuts as they waited for calm to be restored. Travel enthusiasts were not left behind either. They were hugely affected as they could no longer exercise their passion for touring the world. As anyone would expect, many of them were left craving for the day the situation will improve, and travel bans were lifted. Some even had their bookings canceled as soon as the coronavirus was declared a global pandemic. Possibly, a huge number of them had lost their jobs as well, leaving them with very little to spend on leisure travel in the near or far future.
Join me as we take a closer look at ways the pandemic changed the tourism industry drastically, as well as how people travel, and what to look out for the next time you travel.
Most people were dissatisfied because of canceled flights. The hope of a relaxing vacation remained a dream. The news of the travel ban was especially hard for people who had already booked their flights. Imagine having your bags packed just waiting for the day but instead, you get a call about your canceled booking. Devastating, Right! As if this was not enough, you had to remain in your home with the longest distance being to the grocery store. Covid -19 meant putting all your travel ambitions on hold for the sake of your health and the safety of others.
The coronavirus left many people jobless and without a source of income. For so many business organizations, the stay-at-home rules meant layoffs for workers due to diminished business opportunities. Many workers in the tourism sector had to rely on government relief packages to survive. Hotels, entertainment businesses, and recreational facilities took a blow too. After facing a hard time, it would make sense for a traveler to cut back on travel expenses when the ban is lifted.
Effectively cutting back on travel expenses means recognizing areas where most travelers make blunders when it comes to spending. Some of the common money-wasting decisions made by travelers include the following:
From there, you can have a travel budget that suits these harsh economic times caused by the pandemic.
First, you need to understand if you need travel insurance or overseas visitor cover. This is largely dependent on where you are going and the time you are spending overseas. The insurance is meant to protect you from financial losses in case of unforeseen circumstances or delays. With the prevailing Covid -19 pandemic, many countries need insurance covers from visitors. This is to avoid unpaid bills and treatment delays, among other things. Paying for medical fees abroad can be expensive. That is why you should check an insurance plan or medical cover before making your travel plans. For those who crave a different air, we have included some resources at the end of the article that may be useful for those that haven’t traveled in a while. All the same, below are a few tips that can help you save on travel insurance:
The pandemic has taught us about saving for the rainy days. Some people are unaware of how to save from travel pricing. Imagine traveling for as little as half the cost. How amazing is that? Various discount airlines charge lower prices compared to national carriers for a similar destination. Browsing through them can help you make a decision. However, check the reviews. This will put things into perspective if the cheaper flight is good enough for you. In pricing, also look out for offers and promotions. If they are within your travel date, you can get a cheaper ticket. Therefore, if you have the luxury of planning ahead, choose an airline that will take you to your destination while saving you money.
You do not have to rob a bank to have a good night's rest. Most people are wired to the hotel mentality. Unless you have a lot of cash, you should re-think. Your sleep need not be that expensive. If you are looking to save some cash, you can consider checking out hostels, Airbnb, guest houses, or vacation rentals. Not all hostels are rowdy, and with sites like Booking.com, you can select one that matches your preference. Airbnb, vacation rentals, and home away are examples of accommodation options that will give you an amazing experience while considering your pockets. Some of these have a kitchen and organized dry cleaning, which helps save you money. Therefore do not pick the first hotel that appears on your Google search, explore and review the various options available.
We get that one of the reasons for travel is to try out different cuisines. You can do this at cost-friendly rates. The next time you are vacationing, try to find restaurants and eateries in the outskirts. Most tourists flock to the main center, making it expensive. Venture into the surroundings and discover mouth-watering delicacies at low prices. Check out local reviews that will give you an insight into the most amazing dining experiences. Remember, formal restaurants will always cost more than cafes. The same applies to dinner costing more than lunch despite it being similar food. Therefore, you have to be wise. A good meal does not always have to be expensive.
Despite the information provided here, you should check out the various guidelines put in place depending on your country of origin and purpose of travel.
List of resources for countries that love their traveling, have invested in local tourism, and may lift travel bans:
Australia - With international flights resuming, hotel quarantine has been reinforced. However, the rules in - The Land Down Under - Australia will majorly depend on your country of origin. This is especially when it comes to travel and health insurance. Despite the seemingly limited flights entering the country in pandemic times, citizens and residents are allowed to get back into the country. The same applies to those in the exempt category as per the Australian Home Affairs website. Domestic travel is allowed, following the rules put in place.
Thailand - vaccinated foreigners can visit Phuket Island without getting quarantined.
U.S.A. - The border between Canada, Mexico, and the US will still be closed. USA citizens are now allowed to visit Greece. As summer approaches, domestic travel restrictions in the US, including quarantine measures have been eased. There is a requirement for negative-Covid certification or vaccination document depending on your destination or departure country.
Italy - Government passes to visit high-risk zones are required. Also, quarantine requirements for visitors from some European countries were extended to 30th April 2021. With the need for travel documentation, traveling from some third-world countries for tourism purposes is allowed.
As the stakeholders in the tourism sector try to revive the industry, it pays to rethink your travel approach. Vacationing need not be expensive. With the right tricks up your sleeve, you can tour the world for a lot less than you might think. So, as you prepare to travel, remember to adhere to Covid-19 guidelines since you cannot have fun in poor health.
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