COVID-19 has had a devastating impact in countries around the world on the tourism industry, local economies, and jobs. Tourist destinations across the globe were forced to close up shop as travel bans and lockdowns left visitor numbers plummeting.
Next Vacay has created a powerful video working with suffering locals from many beach and tourist destinations following the journey of the hardest-hit holiday spots across the world, capturing their desperate calls for help via SOS signs carved into their coastlines.
The Philippines lost $9.7b throughout 2020
The Philippines is made up of 7,641 islands, with 5,000 still being unnamed and largely unexplored. It’s that mystery and natural beauty that means tourism is responsible for a quarter (24.6%) of contributions to their annual GDP. Covid saw the island group cut off from the rest of the world, costing their economy $9.76 billion in much-needed income. They might be one of the world’s largest archipelagos, but they’re also one of the world’s holiday hotspots that most needs your help.
The 10 destinations with the biggest drop in visitors
No. of Monthly Visitors in 2019
No. of Monthly Visitors in 2020
Drop in Visitors
% Drop in Yearly Visitors (2019/2020)
How to support the local economy when you’re on vacation
To help these countries’ tourism industries that were affected by COVID, we recommend visitors make a conscious effort to support the local economy. Naveen Dittakavi, founder and CEO of Next Vacay, has some tips to help support these communities when you’re on vacation:
Create a more authentic experience and stay in the local hotels rather than chains
When you visit attractions, hire a local tour guide. Not only will you be supporting the local economy, but you’ll also be adding a new experience to your trip.
Buy souvenirs from street vendors and local businesses rather than duty-free.
Eat like the locals. There are plenty of independent restaurants run by locals where you can experience the culture through their cuisine rather than sticking to larger chains.
Leave good reviews online for places you’ve enjoyed to help bring in new customers.
From Macau to Greece, nowhere has escaped the impact of COVID-19, and this data shows the severity of the situation.