Believing that Coronavirus is already in your local community, or will be soon is almost freeing. It is, it will be. If it’s already at home, what’s scary about going away, when authorities deem it safe?
Make no mistake: the vast majority of airlines cancelling flights to Coronavirus infected destinations are not doing so out of an abundance of caution for health and safety, they’re doing so because they are being bled dry by low demand. We all created a world where 10% of global jobs are based around tourism, and shunning our back to it when danger is everywhere is irresponsible.
Most decisions affecting Coronavirus in the travel world thus far are based on financial losses due to dwindling demand, not fear, panic or any of the other things the CDC or WHO says not to do.
The world needs travel; countries, individuals and businesses depend on it, and since Coronavirus has reached every far reaching part of the globe anyway, it seems crazy to let xenophobia and fear win.
Millions more people will suffer from a lack of travel than they will from Coronavirus, and when governments open borders and deem it safe again, travel is essential.
If you’ve been watching the news, and let’s be honest, the news loves Coronavirus – you’ve probably seen headlines stating that people have contracted COVID-19 without traveling. If there’s anything the experts agree on, it’s that the Coronavirus is going places.
If you live in or near a major city, it’s probably in one of your grocery stores, pubs, movie theaters or gyms. That’s no more fear mongering than anything you see on the news, the difference is that these are things you can personally relate to, and not big-bad-scary things far, far away.
Xenophobia is pretending that it’s only impacting Asia or Europe and that people and cases there are somehow different.
It’s incredibly stupid. It’s in America, it’s in Australia, it’s in South America and really – just about everywhere and it’s spreading fast. And yes, it’s expected to go even further. But no more fear – the news is plenty good at that.
Unless you plan on living in an underground bunker, eating canned peaches for the next 6 months and touching nothing but Purell bottles while watching 24 hour news, you might as well be brave and go enjoy yourself, or at the very least – consider it when the world opens its doors again.
Yes, for healthy, adventurous travel types, there hasn’t been a greater opportunity in budget; or luxury travel since the financial crisis of 2008.
That doesn’t mean travel today, but don’t give up on travel this year, or early next.
People are freaked out, hotels are empty, so are airplanes, and prices are plummeting.
But most importantly, we the greedy travelers created a world based on tourism, and it’s irresponsible to shun it, once health concerns go.
Millions, even billions of peoples lives and wellbeing are at stake, and that has nothing to do with infection.
Bottom line: only you can decide whether going out into the world is too risky for you and those around you, or when it will be safe enough.
When you do decide to travel, opportunities are simply vast and the welcome mat is on full tilt.
More than 300,000,000 people globally depend on travel for their livelihood.
Flights are already down 33% on the year, with even business class between Europe and the United States hovering at a mere $800 round trip on top airlines. Even then, airlines are cancelling flights due to dwindling demand.
Hotels in all parts of the world, which regularly fetch $250 are $100, and those that were pushing $500 are in the $250’s. There’s even availability to use points!
Supporting travel brands is one thing, but supporting local economies is far more important. Even if you can’t travel, get take out from a local cafe, or help a neighbor.
Travel has been the fastest growing sector for nearly a decade and many countries became all too reliant on the tourism trade. We all wanted to see the world and to handle demand, economies based on tourism became a savior of the people.
If risk is everywhere, why hide at home once things cool down? Places need visitors, and dialog between cultures helps to kill the worst thing of all: fear of the unknown.
Think: guides, taxi drivers, restaurants, airport workers, hotel workers and more. Airlines are already sending staff on unpaid leave, so think to yourself what those in less financially secure parts of the world, or less corporate jobs are faced with.
From Europe to Asia and everywhere in between, including the USA, people from all realms of tourism are being forced to shutter their doors or take leave. For many, that leaves few opportunities to remain financially afloat, or even survive. It makes a bad flu sound a bit less significant.
If markets rumbled over the outbreak, imagine what would happen to the world if default rates and debts skyrocketed due to mass unemployment across the globe? Travel related jobs accounts for over 10% of the world GDP, employing more than 313 million people.
Believing that Coronavirus is already in your local community, or will be soon, is almost freeing.
If it’s already at home, what’s scary about going away? It’s in the UK where I am writing this, and in New York and California where I’ll visit shortly, once travel bans lift. And Tokyo too.
Fears of being quarantined are legitimate, and for that reason its best to wait, for now. Again, you can do your own risk assessment, but 30 days from now, the world should have a much clearer picture than it does today.
This isn’t for the faint of heart, but if you’ve done your own assessment and feel so inclined, the world desperately needs open travel and billions of people around the world depend on it.
I, for one, plan to see as much of the world as I can later this year. When demand is low, opportunity is high, and I might as well take advantage of the 50% off sale on world travel. It’s the only thing that can make you “richer” after all.