Advanced Search

Tourism in Latin America

The airlift problem

The modern tourism industry – or at least the industry as configured before the pandemic – has come to rely critically on airlift. In other words, the industry thrives when competitively priced airlines are available to get the tourists to where they want to go and back again, as quickly and as efficiently as possible. Without that critical airlink, many tourist destinations are simply unable to function. There are of course exceptions with tourists opting to staycation (holiday at home) which often involves using other means of transport – such as roads, rail, ferries, and cruise ships. But air travel has become an essential part of the international tourism equation. What the pandemic has shown is that medical protocols to help fight the virus, such as rigorous social distancing, are hard to observe on a long-haul flight. The initial suggestions that were made included leaving empty seats aboard an aircraft, for example by blocking off the middle row, so that passengers can fly in a more socially distanced manner. However, in most cases this has meant that load factors (the percentage of occupied seats on a flight) drop to unprofitable levels. The industry has focused on other measures to try and make travel safe, such the use of much more intensive cleaning and disinfecting procedures, contactless documentation and ticketing, and the adoption of airport testing for the coronavirus.

End of preview - This article contains approximately 2266 words.

Subscribers: Log in now to read the full article

Not a Subscriber?

Choose from one of the following options