Coronavirus hits global tourism industry as Chinese stay at home

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Hoteliers, retailers and popular sites worry about long-term impact of crisis

Chinese tour groups in Moscow’s Red Square, outside the Louvre museum in Paris and under the shadow of Dubai’s Burj al-Arab were, until this month, commonplace. The camera-wielding Chinese tourist had become a global stereotype.

Chinese visitors accounted for 150m overseas trips in 2019, according to official figures, while Chinese tourists spent $130bn overseas in 2018, up 13 per cent from the previous year, China Tourism Academy found.

But since the coronavirus outbreak started in Wuhan, the absence of Chinese tour groups has left hoteliers, restaurateurs, tour operators and retailers counting the cost as one of their highest-spending customer groups has been forced to stay at home. China’s ministry of transport said that 73 per cent fewer trips were taken by Chinese tourists over the lunar new year holiday in 2020 compared with 2019.

Read more : Financial Times

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