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WSJ article “Coronavirus Threatens Southern Europe’s Vital Tourism Industry”

This was a very interesting article from the perspective of small business owners in Europe. I know from experience if I post link, most people are locked out, so I will post a quote below and hope those interested can find a way to access article.

Tourism will fall all across the world this sum­mer, and south­ern Eu­rope will be among the hard­est-hit re­gions. Travel and tourism ac­count for a rel­a­tively large por­tion of the econ­omy: 15% of gross do­mes­tic prod­uct in Spain, 13% in Italy and 21% in Greece, ac­cord­ing to the World Travel and Tourism Coun­cil, while also pro­vid­ing a high per­cent­age of jobs.
Al­though most lock­downs are ex­pected to end in Eu­rope and other con­ti­nents by sum­mer, many so­cial-dis­tanc­ing re­stric­tions will con­tinue, in­clud­ing rules af­fect­ing travel. And con­sumers, wary about the virus and hit by deep im­mi­nent eco­nomic re­ces­sions al­most likely every­where, aren’t ex­pected to re­turn to their pre­vi­ous va­ca­tion habits for some time.
“Fear of trav­el­ing will prob­a­bly last longer than the pan­demic it­self. It’s dif­fi­cult to ex­pect an im­me­di­ate re­cov­ery of tourism once the lock­down mea­sures are lifted,” said Steven Tryp­steen, an econ­omist at Dutch bank ING.

Posted by
4880 posts

I understand the sentiment about "fear", but I have to think that it will be overwhelmed by economic factors. Given reduced incomes, digging into savings, people maybe using up paid vacation, once we get back to work, probably difficult to then take time off; all may just affect the numbers able to travel. While one might think, airfares and other expenses are not going to be great bargains.

Add to that, while restrictions may be relaxed within your area, restrictions on International travel, or at least more hoops to jump through, I think will persist. We had 3 trip to Europe planned this year, we did get Portugal in February/March, just under the wire, but my business trip to the UK in June is all but certainly cancelled, and I am assuming September is just not going to work out (would gladly help Greece or Italy out).

Posted by
215 posts

Only time will tell....It's hard to say what the restrictions will be form each country. I am planning a trip to England/Wales with an undefined date at this time. It gives me something to look forward to. I am losing brain cells by the minutes looking at Facebook and Netflix! If anyone has any amazing itineraries for England/Wales I am open to see them!

Posted by
24193 posts

The old saying used for so long regarding Brexit is applicable here as well.

Nobody knows.

Posted by
20792 posts

For those of us who are retired, the economic impact is minimal. Or at least it should be. For us the "fear" of travel is related to how easily we could catch the virus. Once a vaccine or effective treatment is available, then we will return but till then we probably are staying close to home and local medical facilities. We are in the process of cancelling the three cruises we had schedule for next year. Time to focus on piling up the frequent flyer points for business class.

Posted by
11473 posts

Regarding the impact on tourism aspect of the article, and while this is purely anecdotal, I really get interested in the places I have gone and will go to so I make acquaintances well in advance and read their English language papers; sometimes for years before I travel there. Most of my trips are to the old Soviet Bloc countries and the sense I am getting is that many are near the breaking point and the push to open up is growing. If that does indeed play out there could be opportunities in the fall.

But I think you would have to be happy with less touristy travel as the COVID impact will be around for a long time. Still, that works for me. I am as happy fishing a riverbank in Montenegro as I am a museum in Hungary. And if I get to spend good time with locals drinking and talking, better yet.

Posted by
43 posts

"If anyone has any amazing itineraries for England/Wales I am open to see them!"

Can't help you on actual travel, but if you have Amazon Prime, you might want to check out Cadfael; he's a 12th Century monk, living on the Wales/England border during the Civil War. He's a Quincy/Columbo type solving crimes.

Entertaining and supposedly historically accurate.

Posted by
2854 posts

Bdokeefe, if that's the PBS Brother Cadfael series, it's fantastic. I saw them all when they were originally broadcast in the 1990's.

Posted by
3023 posts

The focus of this article was how dependent Southern Europe is on Tourism and what its economic outlook is looking like.

They interviewed several small business owners who are struggling to keep their businesses afloat. That seems to be a story without borders. Small business owners trying to stay in business through this pandemic.

Posted by
284 posts

Carol, I can't open the article, but small business trying to stay afloat is going to be huge issue everywhere. I worry for future travel as the small family run spots are often the places I like best to stay and eat at. I hope that they will be able to recover. It would be a shame if the only hotels and restaurants left open are the big chains.

Posted by
5429 posts

What Frank said about retired people -- once my fear of contracting the virus can be overcome (vaccine ??) I would look forward to traveling in a less-frantic manner with fewer crowds. Fond memories of cheap, intimate travel in 1969 when nobody made reservations for museums months in advance.