According to GlobalData, the general sentiment regarding the impact of COVID-19 in Italy is gradually becoming more positive.
In two surveys by GlobalData, one conducted April 28 and the other on May 3, the number of Italians stating that they are ‘extremely concerned’ about the virus dropped by 14%. However, this positive outlook may change as Italy plans to open its borders for international tourists says the data and analytics company.
Ralph Hollister, travel & tourism analyst at GlobalData, commented: “Italy is currently planning that inbound visitors won’t have to go into quarantine once it opens its borders. Just as Italians were beginning to become less concerned about the outbreak of COVID-19, this announcement could re-ignite apprehension around a second spike in its national infection rate. Re-allowing inbound tourism flows from other European countries undeniably increases the chance of infections rates rising once again.”
Hollister continued: “These plans may be nerve-racking for Italian citizens, but will be gladly received by Italian businesses that have ties to the tourism sector. Tourism-related businesses have already lost out on some of its most valuable months. One of the most valuable aspects of tourism for the nation is the inbound and domestic flow of tourists motivated by cultural trips to cities.”
Cultural trips are mostly undertaken from March to May, and then in September to October. GlobalData notes that from March to April in 2019, domestic and outbound trips in Italy jumped by 4.5 million.
Hollister observes that: “The sooner borders are opened the better for local businesses. Many will need to start trading as quickly as possible in order to stay afloat. It is evident that the Italian Government is stuck between a rock and a hard place. The nation’s economy cannot continue on its path of rapid decline. Restarting its tourism sector is seen as a key place to begin in order to re-stimulate economic growth.”
Rise In Costs Will Slow Recovery
In other news from GlobalData, it found that an upswing in travel costs can lead to a slow recovery of tourism industry post-COVID-19.
A COVID-19 consumer survey found that 59% of respondents globally are always or often influenced by how well a product aligns with their financial constraints.
The financial crunches will lead to travel postponements that can further lead to an increase in the travel costs.
And this, says GlobalData, could further slowdown the tourism industry’s recovery from the COVID-19 impact.
Ben Cordwell, travel & tourism analyst at GlobalData, points out that: “In the aftermath of COVID-19, there will be large number of people struggling to make ends meet. A shrinking world economy and mass unemployment will undoubtedly affect millions of people financially. This could lead to a greater number of customers postponing their holidays until they are more financially secure.”
Additionally, many of the costs associated with the tourism industry could be inflated due to the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. Social distancing measures on flights and cruises could see the costs of tickets increase greatly, pricing out some potential customers.
Cordwell concludes: “For the tourism industry to recover successfully a number of financial, operational and social issues must be addressed. This creates a Herculean challenge for all tourism companies in the months ahead.”
Go to www.globaldata.com for more.