Not just airlines: the virus has hotels in trouble too

Video Credit: Reuters Studio - Duration: 01:44s - Published
Not just airlines: the virus has hotels in trouble too

Not just airlines: the virus has hotels in trouble too

It's not just airlines in trouble over the coronavirus: the whole travel trade is suffering, and that's bad news for the global economy.

Julian Satterthwaite reports.


The sight of tourists trapped in cruise ships and hotels isn't a good look for the travel trade.

Some are now being allowed to leave the Tenerife hotel at the center of one coronavirus outbreak.

But the disease spells big trouble for the industry, and the global economy.

Tourism accounts for about 10% of total world employment, or about 319 million jobs.

So far it's airlines that have looked the most exposed to the crisis.

But everyone from hoteliers to tour operators to restaurateurs is set to suffer.

Though on Thursday (March 5) some travelers to Rome were finding a silver lining: (SOUNDBITE) (English) TOURIST FROM SPAIN, EDUARDO TABOINCA, SAYING: "The main difference is there are less people." International travel is forecast to fall 1.5% this year, according to UK analysts Tourism Economics.

That would be the first drop since 2009, at the height of the global financial crisis.

The Asia-Pacific looks most vulnerable, with arrivals there predicted to drop over 10%.

That would be a far worse impact than the SARS outbreak in 2003.

Back then travel dropped just 0.3%.

Markets are certainly paying attention.

Thursday (March 5) alone saw shares in Air France-KLM and Norwegian Air fall by as much as 10%.

Tour operator TUI was down around 6%.

There is one glimmer of hope though.

Tourism Economics says people are getting used to health scares, and return to travel very quickly once there are signs the problem is contained.

The world's hoteliers will hope that's true.

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