The COVID-19 pandemic has changed everything. It’s changed the way we get groceries, the way we hang out with friends, and much more.
But it’s also changed the way we don’t travel. The tourism industry got hit especially hard by the pandemic, as a lot of people aren’t willing to go on summer vacations right now.
If you’re one of them, you may wonder what’s next. Keep reading to learn more about how COVID-19 is affecting the travel and tourism industry.
A New Message From the Tourism Industry
Jobs in travel and tourism industry depend on people traveling. But the coronavirus has upended everything. For starters, many marketing agencies don’t feel like it’s responsible to suggest travel right now.
Virginia is a good example of this. In March, they launched a new travel campaign. But they cut it short four days later as the impact of COVID-19 became undeniable.
More people means more potential spread of coronavirus. In June, the virus started hitting record highs in spots like Florida, Arizona, and Texas.
All of those states have sunny weather and attract a lot of tourists. But vacationing in a viral hot spot is never a good idea.
That’s why you’ll see ad campaigns encouraging visitors to make flexible plans. For instance, a state might not want you to plan a vacation for August. But if you want to plan something for October, they won’t stop you.
It’s a fine line to walk, and a confusing message to send.
But in the short-term, we can still expect more domestic travel than international travel. The European Union is getting ready to reopen its borders, but they’re banning U.S. travelers for now.
In other words, don’t expect to hear much about American world travel anytime soon.
How to Explore Safely
For now, the safest way to explore the world is from the comfort of your home. Get on your phone or laptop and become an armchair tourist.
What is an armchair tourist? It’s someone who learns about countries and cultures without visiting those places in-person.
You may not be able to visit Spain right now, but you can still take Spanish classes online. You can look up photos of the landmarks and decide which ones you want to see when it’s safer to travel.
Armchair tourism also gives you a chance to go beyond the tourist hot spots. You can dive deep into the history of a country or region.
Be warned that you may not always discover pleasant things. A lot of countries have complicated histories. That includes the United States.
But learning the language and cooking the food of a chosen country can make you a more educated visitor in 2021 or 2022.
What about scheduling something for a few months from now? Go for it, but make sure those tickets are refundable.
Supporting the Tourism Industry
If you must travel this summer, try to take a solo trip. Something like camping is safer than staying at a hotel in a crowded city.
Many jobs in tourism won’t come back for a while, if ever. That’s unfortunate, but it doesn’t mean you should risk your health or take unnecessary risks.
Ready to read more about travel? You’ve come to the right place. Click on our World Travel section to learn more about some amazing locales.