The World Tourism Organisation has said that tourism around the world is not expected to return to pre-pandemic levels until 2024.
The sector had seen a growth of four per cent last year over 2020, but in early 2022, the growth seems disrupted due to the highly contagious Omicron variant, according to the UN agency’s World Tourism Barometer.
“The pace of recovery remains slow and uneven across world regions due to varying degrees of mobility restrictions, vaccination rates and traveller confidence. Europe and the Americas recorded the strongest results in 2021 compared to 2020 (+19% and +17% respectively), but still both 63% below pre-pandemic levels,” according to the report.
UNWTO Panel of Experts, suggest that most tourism professionals see better prospects for 2022. While 58% expect a rebound in 2022, mostly during the third quarter, an42% vs point to a potential rebound only in 2023. A majority of experts (64%) now expect international arrivals will return to 2019 levels only in 2024 or later, up from 45% in the September survey.
The UNWTO Confidence Index show a slight decline in January- April 2022. The report suggests that international tourist arrivals could grow by 30% to 78% as compared to 2021, which is still 50% to 63% less than pre-pandemic levels.