The global travel and tourism industry are no stranger to crises. Past pandemics lead to steep declines in regional tourism and travel for a range of indicators, such as hotel occupancy rates, air passenger numbers, and reduced investments in tourism infrastructure, but also experienced relatively rapid rates of recovery compared with other types of crises.  The World Economic Forum (WEF, 2015) provides a useful comparison of how tourism responded to and recovered from various types of crises in the past, including economic, terrorism, natural disasters, and pandemics. Recovery pathways vary for different indicators and types of crises. Generally, accommodation occupation rates were found to recover within 1-5 years (see also Borko, 2018), while aviation tends to take longer in the order of up to 10 years for a full recovery (WEF, 2015).

Tourism flows and recovery

Differences in recovery rates across time, and measured as a volume-based index (e.g. number of jobs) using expert judgement    

To say Covid-19 is different, is a vast understatement. The ACTN just released a key paper on why this crisis is different. The paper describes how changing tourism flows will require adaptation at the destination, and what  recovery and adaptation could look like (and be different) for airlines, accommodations and tourism.


 Hotel Resilient is a member of the Action for Tourism and Climate Network (ACTN). ACTN is a global group fo experts whose aim it is to collaborate and contribute positively towards finding and communicating long-term solutions for low-carbon and climate resilient tourism.