Predicted the future of tourism that horrified experts

Russia and Ukraine together accounted for only about 3% of international tourism spending, but this should not be considered a small figure. If the situation is not resolved in the foreseeable future, global tourism could lose at least $14 billion in revenue. And the main burden of these losses will fall on the “European beach destinations.” Such data are contained in the latest report of the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO).

N.B. also on this topic, read the material “The cost of summer holidays will skyrocket not only for Russian tourists: Americans and Germans need to prepare for exorbitant prices.”

As donors of tourists, Russia and Ukraine accounted for 4% of all international arrivals in Europe, but only 1% of Europe's international tourism revenue in 2020, the UNWTO added. At the same time, during the pandemic, the Russian market also gained significant weight for long-haul destinations such as the Maldives, Seychelles or Sri Lanka.

Some tourist countries also frankly admit their dependence on tourists from these countries. So Hisham al-Demery, former chairman of the Egyptian Tourism Development Board, said that in the recent period, Egypt depended on Ukrainians and Russians, since they accounted for 45% to 55% of all tourists arriving in the country of the Pyramids. He, of course, optimistically added that Ukrainian and Russian tourists are mainly focused on beach tourism and their average spending is low; so their absence can be made up for by the fact that “Egypt is now experiencing a resurgence of cultural tourism”. “Cultural tourists are more important because they use domestic services more, such as local transportation, visiting museums and shopping at local bazaars, so the average spending of a cultural tourist is higher than that of a beach tourist,” he assured. However, the question is whether “cultural” tourism will be shaken due to the global crisis…

“The crisis is creating new challenges for the entire global economic environment and could hinder the restoration of confidence in global travel. It also led to an economic downturn in most countries, causing the citizens of the world to put travel plans on the back burner,” the UNWTO said. It was this forecast that terrified tourism, counting on the first successful summer after a two-year covid lockdown.

Indeed, in January 2022, global international tourist arrivals more than doubled by 130% compared to 2021. The number of tourists in January increased worldwide by 18 million, which is equal to the total increase for the whole of 2021. So the optimistic predictions had a real basis. But in February and March, the picture will be gloomy.

However, the UNWTO does not lose optimism: growth was observed in the Middle East (+89%) and Africa (+51%) in January. So some experts remain hopeful that after an unprecedented drop in 2020 and 2021, international tourism is expected to continue its gradual recovery in 2022.

For those who care about a healthy lifestyle, we recommend reading: “British doctors told why headaches occur and how to get rid of them.”

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