Winds of change are blowing in the tourism

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Winds of change are blowing in the tourism
December 16, 2020

Closing the most difficult year in history, in 2021 and with positive data on the table, the picture is different. Challenges and priorities undoubtedly change

2020 no longer resists much analysis but it is important to review very carefully the evolution that Q4 shows in key markets and segments. According to the information we have received, 2021 will begin with other objectives very different from those that have been managed since the outbreak of the health crisis. The survival stage would be left behind and today most companies focus on innovation, repositioning and the development of new segments with enormous potential.  

According to ALTA, commercial aviation in Latin America and the Caribbean continues to show progressive signs of recovery. In October, for the first time since the pandemic began, just over 10 million passengers traveled in the region, this being the best month since April 2020.
In October, practically all domestic markets in the region -except for Venezuela- they were operational. Mexico, Brazil, Chile and Colombia led domestic traffic, representing 60% of total domestic traffic in the region.
Mexico had its best month since April with 2.71 million passengers, representing a reduction of 41.3% compared to October 2019. Brazil also registered the best month since April with 4 million passengers and a reduction of 52% compared to October 2019. Colombia registered a traffic of 655,000 passengers, 72% less in October 2019, and Chile had 371,000 passengers which is 68% less than in October 2019.
The extra-regional international market also showed an important reactivation, being the best month since the total border closure in April, driven by the Mexico-USA market that registered 1.2 million passenger traffic and a reduction of 42.8%.
Regarding the intraregional international market, certain dynamism began to be seen in some markets such as Mexico-Colombia with 19,500 passengers traveling between the two countries. Mexico and Brazil also stand out with 10,500 passengers, a reduction of 62% compared to October last year.
It is important to mention that these three countries currently have no restrictions for international passengers, no negative test, or quarantine, which allows them to see better numbers in passenger traffic.
3,277,772 passengers traveled to and from Latin America and the Caribbean in October, 64.7% less than the previous year. Traffic (RPK) decreased 72.8% and capacity (ASK) decreased 64.9%, bringing load factor to 62.7%.

Global picture
Airports Council International (ACI) World has released its fifth COVID-19 economic impact analysis revealing the devastating effect on the airport industry and prospects for recovery.
The advisory bulletin, The Impact of COVID-19 on Airport Business, reveals that the global airport industry will see a reduction of more than 6 billion passengers by the end of 2020 compared to the pre-COVID-19 forecast for 2020, which represents a decrease. -64.2% of world passenger traffic.
Europe and the Middle East are projected to be the two most affected regions, with declines above -70% compared to the projected baseline, while Asia-Pacific has embarked on recovery earlier and faster than other regions and it is expected to close 2020 with a decrease of -59.2%, driven by large national markets such as China. Asia-Pacific is the only region that registers a decline below -60%.
The airport industry was expected to generate around $ 172 billion (all figures in US dollars) this year, but the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on airport revenue will result in a reduction of $ 111.8 billion (or -65% compared to the previous COVID-19 forecast).
ACI World has developed scenarios that explore the potential recovery trajectory and, based on the baseline scenario, domestic passenger traffic is expected to recover to 2019 levels in 2023 and international passenger traffic to recover in 2024.
" The pandemic has caused a large-scale transportation crisis and aviation came to a virtual halt in April following blockades imposed in many countries in the second half of March. " Said the ACI World Director General, Luis Felipe de Oliveira.
“We are now seeing some positive signs and the outlook is slightly better for the recovery, but there is still a long way to go. One thing is for sure, the world will be different after this pandemic.
“Recent announcements of successful vaccine trials offer hope for a sustained recovery, but vaccination drives will take time and the industry needs government help and political support now to lay a solid foundation for recovery.
“A consistent approach to testing should be implemented now to promote travel and eliminate restrictive quarantine measures with a coordinated, risk-based approach to combining testing and vaccination introduced in the future.
“Testing and vaccines together will play a key role in the recovery of the industry, providing passengers with a safe travel environment and fostering confidence in air travel.
ACI World also found that, in the long term, it may take up to two decades for global traffic to return to previously anticipated traffic levels.

Hospitality in Central and South America with signs of recovery Hospitality in
these regions has reported higher performance levels since the beginning of the pandemic, according to STR's October 2020 data.

USD constant currency, October 2020 (percentage change since October 2019)
Occupancy: 29.0% (-52.7%)
Average daily rate (ADR): US $ 66.68 (-21.4%)
Income per room Available (RevPAR): US $ 19.36 (-62.8%)
Each of the three key performance metrics was the highest of any month in STR's Central and South America database since March.

Local currency, October 2020 (percentage change from October 2019)
Occupation: 40.9% (-36.7%)
ADR: S / .189.68 (-52.3%)
RevPAR: S / .77.61 (-69.8%)
The absolute occupancy level was the lowest of any month in Peru since May, while the RevPAR level was the lowest of any month since April. However, the ADR was the highest of any month since June.

Occupancy: 22.2% (-64.0%)
ADR: $ 225,976.65 (-14.7%)
RevPAR: $ 50,167.45 (-69.3%)

Optimism in the Caribbean
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact global tourism, the main leaders of the Caribbean tourism sector affirm that tourism is the best hope for recovery and renewal of the region and that the success The reactivation of the sector it is based on your ability to enhance your strengths while reshaping to adapt to a changing global environment.
During recent presentations to travel and tourism stakeholders, Pablo José Torres Sojo, the recently appointed president of the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA), and Frank Comito, CEO and Director General of CHTA, expressed the association's confidence that tourism will once again show its resilience and help lead the region to recovery.
Torres noted that "while the tourism industry and economies are facing unprecedented challenges, the Caribbean tourism industry is no stranger to crises, and there are every reason to believe that it will continue to show its resilience and recover. ". 
In a speech to the Jamaica Product Exchange (JAPEX) last month, Torres reported that COVID-19 is accelerating changes in customer behavior that are forcing tourism-related businesses to adapt to a new reality. In addition to the very important strengthening of the health and safety protocols that are in place throughout the Caribbean, the training of industry professionals in new technologies and the reinforcement of the recognized culture of hospitality of the region is needed to take the region through the road to recovery.
Torres noted that the region's natural beauty, its proximity to North American markets, its brand awareness, the natural welcoming nature of its people, and its appeal as a wellness destination are just some of the most enduring charms of the world. Caribbean. The visitor industry, the most important economic engine in the region, he added, boosts the income of small businesses and drives the great development of infrastructure and human resources.
By participating in the recent Greater Caribbean Business Forum of the Association of Caribbean States (ACS), Comito addressed the imperative of health and safety in a COVID-19 environment, adding that communicating priorities quickly and clearly to markets and tourism stakeholders in the region was key. to a dynamic and sustainable recovery.  
While tourism presents the Caribbean's greatest opportunity for recovery and renewal, Comito noted opportunities for diversification not outside the sector but within it, in particular through strengthening economic ties with tourism to guide the reshaping of the region. He also stated that tourism leaders and stakeholders must address the region's challenges, such as its vulnerability to economic downturns; climate, political and public health crises; manage growth, affordable air travel and rising costs; loss of income; competition from other markets; insufficient public-private partnerships; the need to increase support for local entrepreneurs and small businesses; and the balance between foreign and local ownership. 
Both leaders pointed to the considerable investments made by the Caribbean countries and territories to implement and strengthen health and safety initiatives, supported by the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) and the public sector throughout the region, as key factors to accelerate the recovery of tourism and the economies of the region.
Torres and Comito warned that the recovery of tourism must be accelerated without compromising environmental diversity, without sacrificing advances in promoting sustainable development or diluting the cultural identity of the Caribbean. As visitor needs and behaviors continue to change, hotels, tour operators, activities, restaurants, marine attractions, and partner businesses must also adapt by training and empowering staff to accentuate and differentiate hospitality, culture, identity and diversity of the Caribbean. 
Moving forward, CHTA leaders will continue to encourage association members to actively seek, pursue, and develop opportunities for collaboration that allow the Caribbean to leverage its considerable strengths.


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