Most hoteliers that participated in a survey put out by Deloitte believe that Malta and the rest of the world will achieve tourism normality by 2023.
A significant portion of hoteliers (17%) predict that pre-COVID-19 business levels will be achieved in 2024 or later.
In a bid to better identify what the post-COVID-19 tourism recovery process might look like, Deloitte looked into how the tourism industry was affected by major global events in the past.
- The 2003 SARS epidemic saw a 15% decline in tourism. Although this is a relatively minor decline when compared to the COVID-19 pandemic, it still took around five months for the tourism industry to recover.
- The 9/11 attacks saw a global drop of 15% in tourism. Following this event, normality in this sector was achieved after around 12 months. Due to the fact that this particular event was directly associated with travel, recovery time was longer. The aftermath of such attacks also stand to show how anxiety and fear of travel play a key factor in determining how long tourism will take to recover.
- The 2010 Global Economy Crisis led to a 10% decrease in tourism numbers, and the process of recovery took around 10 months.
These results serve to show that recovery periods in general – but the COVID-19 recovery period in particular – are not fast processes.
Furthermore, travel anxiety tends to slow down the recovery process far more than economic problems; hence why outbreaks and pandemics affect the tourism industry far worse than economic crises.