The COVID19 Epidemic Has Exceeded the Impact of China Inbound and outbound tourism on SARS
Under the cognition of vulnerability and resilience, it should be considered that the bearing capacity of China tourism enterprises in different ways is different.
The new pneumonia epidemic hit the “pause button” for the China national tourism industry. As one of the most affected industries, how long does it take for tourism to recover? How to embark on a healthier development path after the epidemic is over? Nanfang Daily reporter interviewed Bao Jigang, a Yangtze River scholar and a professor at Sun Yat-sen University.
Bao Jigang believes that the impact of the new coronary pneumonia epidemic on tourism has exceeded that of “SARS”, but it cannot stop the pace of tourism development. This is the consensus of the industry. Bao Jigang believes that it is necessary to re-recognize the vulnerability of the tourism industry and reflect on the current way of over-investment. At the same time, the focus of how to promote the revitalization of the tourism industry is to provide better public management services.
Talking about the recovery of the China tourism industry
Nanfang Daily: After the SARS epidemic in 2003, the tourism industry has maintained a double-digit growth for a long time. In your opinion, can the tourism industry continue to maintain a high growth rate after the new coronary pneumonia epidemic? Will the fundamentals of the tourism industry change?
Bao Jigang: The Spring Festival is the traditional peak season for tourism. The turbulent new coronary pneumonia caused a complete stagnation of tourism activities. During the Spring Festival, the impact of the epidemic on the tourism industry has exceeded the 2003 SARS. However, judging from the situation after the “disasters” in history, the tourism industry has not disappeared. Not only has it not disappeared, but it has also become an increasingly large proportion of the global economy. We can draw a conclusion that tourism is a sunrise industry, and a temporary crisis cannot stop the development of tourism, which is also a consensus that the industry should achieve.
Without considering other factors, if the epidemic ends in the first half of the year, we can roughly make the following judgment: Judging from the cycle of China’s economic development and the natural development law of the tourism market, domestic tourism will resume growth in the second half of 2020. In the second half of 2021, the recovery will even exceed the level of the same period in 2019. I think that the recovery time of the tourism industry will generally take about one year.
Judging from the perspective of tourism recovery, domestic tourism, especially short-distance tourism, is restored first. Outbound tourism recovery takes a certain amount of time. Outbound tourism may also be affected by China’s foreign exchange income, which is positively related to it. Recovery of inbound tourism may take longer. At the same time, holiday tourism and natural health tourism will have a big growth (read further on China Travel Guide); urban tourism consumption will be more active; rural tourism around the city will have a substantial growth; areas with large natural geographic scale and areas with less serious epidemics , Tourism will have a greater recovery; team travel, especially long-term team travel, will take time to recover, and individual travel, especially for self-driving families, will have a major recovery. The long-term tour charter and tourism special train recovery will be more slow.
Talk about how the “retaliatory growth” of the post-epidemic market compares
Nanfang Daily: Some people think that the new coronary pneumonia epidemic has caused great losses to the national tourism industry. What do you think?
Bao Jigang: In terms of domestic influence, I think that some experts currently estimate it on the high side. They calculated based on the total tourism revenue of 6.5 trillion yuan in 2019, and the question is, how is it calculated? The other is according to the data released by Ctrip, Ctrip released a message: It is expected that 450 million people will travel throughout the Spring Festival in 2020, and the tourism industry income will not be less than 550 billion. However, among these 450 million person-times, a considerable number of people are returning to their hometowns. Although they are all “mobile”, is it also considered tourism?
Nanfang Daily: Many media and think tanks predict that there will be a high probability of a retaliatory growth after the outbreak of SARS in the tourism consumer market after the epidemic. What do you think?
Bao Jigang: Whether there will be so-called “retaliatory growth” depends on which stage of the index is used as a reference, compared with the current stage or the same stage of last year. Compared with the present, it must be retaliatory growth, because now it is zero. But if you say that compared to last year, it is not necessarily, and is double-digit growth even retaliatory? We should treat statistics more realistically to understand tourism. The major travel research think tanks should also conduct in-depth investigations in a practical and realistic manner, rather than adopting the rhetoric of favoritism. Propose some practical measures, this is what our think tank should do.
Talking about data statistics, the current superposition of many data is recommended to introduce geographic scale statistics
Nanfang Daily: If the above-mentioned loss prediction for tourism is unscientific, how should we understand the statistics scientifically?
Bao Jigang: After the epidemic, we should take the opportunity of this tourism industry to “zero out” to squeeze out the bubble of statistics, get to know the tourism industry realistically and introduce geographic scales for statistics, that is, by province, city and county. Tourist statistics on a geographic scale. The current disadvantage is that many data are superimposed together. A Hunan tourist went to Guangzhou, Foshan and Zhuhai, and all three counted him as the number of tourists. Finally, the number of tourists was aggregated. 1 person became 3 people, which will produce Superimposed effect, which leads to data inconsistent with reality. After introducing the geographical scale, we can count the number of people from other provinces to Guangdong, and we can calculate the data of tourists from other provinces more accurately.
The data may also be a bubble. Taking students as an example, 80% of the first-year undergraduates at Sun Yat-sen University ’s School of Tourism have more than two mobile phone numbers, one in their hometown and one in their study area. . In addition, people who take high-speed rail and highway self-driving, such as from Guangzhou to Kunming, through Guangxi and Guizhou are recorded as tourists in Guangxi and Guizhou, but in fact did not spend in Guangxi and Guizhou. Taking the Spring Festival as an example, the returnees are counted in the number of tourists, but their consumption of accommodation and meals will be lower than that of normal tourists. Therefore, in terms of tourism research and decision-making after the epidemic, we have the opportunity to get a more scientific and accurate data from scratch.
Nanfang Daily: Many people say that tourism is a sunrise industry, but it is also a very vulnerable industry. How should we recognize the vulnerability of tourism?
Bao Jigang: The tourism industry has its very fragile side. The impact of any emergency on the tourism industry is very direct and serious, and the industry risk is very high. Tourism products cannot be stored. Unlike cars or food, they cannot be sold today but tomorrow. One place cannot be sold for another. This is where tourism is more vulnerable than other industries. Therefore, tourism demand is sensitive and the tourism industry is fragile, but industry fragility does not mean that there is no vitality, nor does it mean that there is no potential for future development.
Talking about tourism investment, the investment cycle is long and the risks are great, you should take this opportunity to reflect
Nanfang Daily: In recent years, the tourism industry has shown the characteristics of large investment and long cycle, but the vulnerability makes the risk of tourism companies too high, how should we view this problem?
Bao Jigang: While talking about vulnerability, the academic community recently talked more about resilience, that is, the ability of tourist destinations or products to recover after a crisis. In fact, the characteristics of the tourism industry that we used to talk about—less investment, quick results, and low costs—just the opposite of what they are now. In the initial stage of tourism development, it actually presents the characteristics of a sharing economy. Taking Yangshuo as an example, the tourism industry started to sell beer and food with its own facade, and vacated two rooms for accommodation, which means less investment. Later, the economy developed well, and the pursuit of five-star hotels and even international brand hotels has become a big investment and a long cycle. In this way, the risk is great, we should take this opportunity to reflect.
Therefore, under the cognition of vulnerability and resilience, we should consider that tourism enterprises have different bearing capacities in different ways. For example, the current homestay is becoming more and more high-end. When faced with the epidemic, its vulnerability is manifested. Should we think more about the flexible model with the least investment in tourism, quick results, and high efficiency that was first proposed, that is to say, we return to the alternative and inclusive development ideas from the academic, not blindly What is the investment amount?
Nanfang Daily: In your opinion, after the epidemic, in which aspects should cultural and tourism departments at all levels stimulate the demand-side market and help the tourism industry recover its vitality?
Bao Jigang: The “Consumption Tax Legislation” that was put on the agenda of the country last year is expected to be passed and implemented as soon as possible. This will inspire local governments to attach importance to the development of tourism, because tourism consumption can be directly reflected in local taxes. Therefore, the most important thing for the government is to provide better public management services after the epidemic is well controlled. The demand for tourism always exists. At the same time, from the perspective of industrial development, it is necessary to adjust the basic idea of the construction of the tourism supply system and promote the construction of the tourism supply system in a “+ tourism” rather than “tourism +” manner.
After the COVID19 pandemic, in comparison with China inbound tourism, Tibet will stand out and set apart from any other parts of China. Foreign people may not entrust themselves to travel safely in China, however as the high plateau of Tibet was less hit by the virus and Tibet travel is far more attractive to foreign travelers than any big cities in China such as Beijing or Shanghai. Read further about Tibet Tours from local Tibet travel agency.