Dubai: Travel and tourism sector prepared to deal with new pandemics after Covid-19

The industry was one of the worst-hit due to Covid, resulting in the closure of airports, grounding of airlines and dismissal of thousands of employees globally

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File photo

Waheed Abbas

Published: Mon 1 May 2023, 5:59 PM

The global travel and tourism sector is ready for the next pandemic, thanks to lessons learnt during Covid-19, as well as businesses going digital to continue their B2B and B2C operations in case of an eventuality.

Earlier this month, a new disease called the Marburg virus was reported in the African countries of Equatorial Guinea and Tanzania, prompting many airlines to suspend flights after the outbreak of the disease in the two African countries.

Oman advised travellers to postpone trips to countries affected by the Marburg virus and take precautions if the travel is urgent.

On April 6, Emirates airline announced that “due to the confirmed outbreak of the Marburg virus in the Republic of Tanzania and Guinea, customers arriving in Oman, and those who have travelled from the impacted countries, must isolate themselves and seek immediate assistance if they feel unwell within 21 days of travel.”

The travel and tourism industry was one of the worst-hit industries due to the coronavirus pandemic, resulting in the closure of airports, grounding of airlines and dismissal of thousands of employees across the globe.

Mathew Zachariah, marketing manager, Al Rais Travel, said most of the businesses are prepared to deal with a new pandemic.

“During Covid-19, most of them were not prepared digitally. But now they have either gone or [are] going digital, which will enable them to continue offering B2B and B2C services if the pandemic breaks out.”

Farzana Sameer, general manager, Dadabhai Travel, echoed Zachariah’s comments, saying: “Absolutely, the industry is more prepared now for any new pandemic,” on the sidelines of the four-day Arabian Travel Market 2023, which opened at the Dubai World Trade Centre on Monday.

Ross Veitch, CEO and co-founder, Wego, said the travel industry has learnt lessons from Covid-19. “I think if a pandemic hits the world, we would be a bit more on the front foot.”


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