New data shows extent of tourism’s COVID-19 collapse

Welcome return: International tourists are returning to Botswana following the COVID-19 interruptions
Welcome return: International tourists are returning to Botswana following the COVID-19 interruptions

Figures made available by the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) show that the local tourism and travel sector shed at least 17,000 direct and indirect jobs in 2020, while spending by foreign arrivals dropped nearly 80%.

The numbers provide a glimpse into the impact of the pandemic on one of the country’s key economic sectors, a key foreign currency earner, downstream value distributor and employer. While Statistics Botswana publishes annual tourism arrivals, the WTTC’s research reports include trends in employment, tourist spend and contributions of the travel and tourism sector to the economy.

Like other countries, the local tourism industry was hard hit by COVID-19’s arrival, as local and international borders closed between March and December 2020. Even after the limited reopening in December, arrivals from key markets such as Europe and the US were limited by travel restrictions between their countries, all along the transit routes and on arrival in Botswana.

Editor's Comment
A woman’s right to choose: Or is it?

Here in Botswana, we have many single-parent households, mostly female-led, so what does that suggest? That some fathers choose to ditch the responsibility of caring for their children and leave them to the ones who carry them during pregnancy to do the heavy lifting.Of course, in other dynamics, there are instances where the father wants to keep the baby and the would-be mother does not want to, hence the saying ‘whose body is it anyway’.In...

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