Online Discussions: Effects of COVID-19 on Tourism Industry

Online Discussions: Effects of COVID-19 on Tourism Industry

The pandemic has a huge impact on all industries and markets across the globe. Due to zero
movement and lockdown, very little can be done through online resources because the clients are
unable to redeem services provided by different companies.

Through this period as the flights are no longer in the sky and travel is put to a stop, it is killing the
tourism industry in every possible way which not only affects people working in this industry but
hurts the overall economy as well.

A brief discussion happened over this topic earlier this month, organized by GLOBAL NEXUS. The
panellists and listeners were all ready to address the major issues and dig up solutions for the
problems that are arising due to the coronavirus.

Mr.Amrish, part of the tourism task force and board member has been working alongside
organizations like IBP, IHHA, FICCI, etc. to list down some of the urgent demands and requirements
that need to be addressed as soon as possible.

The biggest issue that was presented for the government to act upon was the increment of SCIS level
from 7% to 10%. This can boost companies in the tourism sector to help balance with the situation
and survive through it.

Speaking of survival, the panellist also mentioned how survival can be categorized as per the
financial areas that are concerned. Statutory and Operations- while statutory referred to all the tax
billings that hang upon our throats, operations referred to the capital required for a company to run.
The fact that the taxes that have been submitted by organizations must be refunded was something
that was given a pass by the government and surely helped a lot, as informed by the panellist. Two
other points were also made which can be presented:

Based on the 2018-19 balance sheets, foreigners can be taken under inbound, and GST must be
lowered to a minimum amount or removed for at least 2 years.

Loans are eased for 6 months for the companies to get back on their feet and be capable enough to
stand in the market.

Survival is as important as revival is. Attempts over just surviving are of no use if there is no strategy
to grow out of survival and get back in the game. This is where the importance of formulating a
revival strategy was discussed by Mr.Anuj, a young panellist with experience in the International
market in the industry, from worldwide DMC. He gave various instances over the grim situation of
European countries that are way deep into this alarming problem. There is a 25% wreckage in the
global travel industry which maybe not a very cheering fact but the participants were assured that
the sun will shine soon and they should concentrate over their strategy for after 6 months when the
sky clears.

The panellist explained how this the time for employees of this industry to inform their customers
and existing clients. Make them aware of the current situation and bring them in terms of the actual
scenario. They should be there for their customers right now and connect as much as they can.
Networking can be very useful once everything is over and you need a boost for yourself.

“Inform your customers, not as a seller but an informant.”

Don’t push your business in a direction that can be dangerous for the brand as a whole but look at
the potential risk of certain countries where you can reach and start interacting over there.
I look forward to selling your services at the end quarter of this year and get potential clients to be
interested. Try to convince them by pitching how the sudden burst of booking can take the
opportunity of availing services away at that time and work to get token money off the customers to
keep running.

The questions and doubts were cleared as the host started with a quite interesting question: What
will be affected the most; inbound, outbound, domestic, or the field of Mice?

The answer was everything; they all will be affected due to the lockdown and more than 201
countries being under the shadow of the coronavirus.

The strategy to act over time can be according to a period of months and setting goals as per that.
We should accept the fact that there is no positive information over when this will be over even by
the WHO. So, International events and travel will be affected for a long time. The domestic situation
may get better after it all comes under control but it will surely be cutting down costs.

The aviation sector’s impact is linked directly to the event industry. Even after we get opened,
people will have a negative psychological impact and will think twice before flying overseas. So, the
domestic business may take lead over international business here.

UNWTO international organization suggestion was questioned by the Event’s Ass. Manager at
GLOBALNEXUS as no actions were really taken in that direction. The priority given to medical and
healthcare right now due to obvious reasons were pointed out. Also, the fact that International
bodies are advisory bodies, not regulators left the government being the one to take direct actions
for the cause.


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