As Covid-19 Clobbers Tourism, Millions Lose a Lifeline

Joseph B. Hash

CANCÚN, Mexico—Since this the moment-sleepy stretch of Mexico’s Caribbean coastline started its transformation into a glitzy resort community fifty years back, it has thrived by attracting thousands and thousands of vacationers in the course of its summer season and wintertime seasons. These times, nevertheless, there are extended stretches of deserted […]

CANCÚN, Mexico—Since this the moment-sleepy stretch of Mexico’s Caribbean coastline started its transformation into a glitzy resort community fifty years back, it has thrived by attracting thousands and thousands of vacationers in the course of its summer season and wintertime seasons.

These times, nevertheless, there are extended stretches of deserted seaside. Hotel occupancy has fallen underneath 30%. Procuring malls are empty. And the tourism field that aided pull Cancún and its persons out of poverty and place them on a more affluent path is having difficulties.

Samuel González—a 38-yr-old who arrived to Cancún years back from Oaxaca, one of Mexico’s poorest states, and flourished offering tour packages—says he has been out of operate for five months now and anxieties about what the long run retains.

“In Cancún there is no economic activity other than tourism,” mentioned Mr. González. “For lots of, it is like the conclusion of the entire world.”

The world tourism downturn that has accompanied the Covid-19 pandemic hit airlines and hotel chains and damage hospitality workers all-around the entire world. But it is staying felt most acutely in the world’s fewer-developed nations, this sort of as Mexico, the place tourism is an essential driver of economic growth.

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