Summer Travel Options Outside The U.S. Are Still Up In The Air As COVID Cases Rise

Summer Travel Options Outside The U.S. Are Still Up In The Air As COVID Cases Rise

NPR 21 July 2021 – Americans desperate to leave the confines of their homes for a last-minute summer destination have a new option. Starting Aug. 9, Canada will reopen to fully-vaccinated Americans for non-essential travel after more than a year of closed borders between the two nations.

A month later, on Sept. 7, fully-vaccinated people from any country can travel to Canada for non-essential travel.

Canada has recorded a steady decline in cases since the spring. On Monday, Canada recorded just 277 confirmed coronavirus cases, according to the World Health Organization. More than 44 million vaccinations have been administered.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Tuesday said tourists were welcome but added: “At every step, the safety of Canadians will continue to be our top priority.”

The U.S.’s neighbour to the North may be opening its doors in time for a summer trip, but the situation elsewhere is far more unpredictable.

This week, the State Department and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued the highest warning advising Americans against travelling to the U.K. The federal government also issued travel advisories to Zimbabwe, Indonesia, Fiji, and the British Virgin Islands, due to rising COVID-19 cases.

The U.K. is experiencing a jump in confirmed coronavirus infections due to the spread of the highly contagious delta variant. The strain is being blamed on increased cases around the world, including in Southeast Asia and in the U.S.

“Because of the current situation in the United Kingdom, even fully vaccinated travellers may be at risk for getting and spreading COVID-19 variants,” the CDC said in its update.

For travel into the U.S., the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) requires all air passengers to show a negative COVID-19 test taken within three days of departure. Passengers can also show proof of recovery from the virus within the last 90 days, according to the State Department.

A rise in cases doesn’t stop reopening
From July 13 to July 19, the U.K. government recorded 322,170 people tested positive for the coronavirus–an increase of 41.2% compared to the previous week.

U.K. Health Minister Sajid Javid said Tuesday that vaccinations are working despite a rise in infections.

“Although the numbers for both are going up, the ratio of cases to hospitalisations is the lowest it’s ever been,” he said. “In other words: we are seeing far fewer people who test positive, like I have, going on to need hospital treatment.”

Javid tested positive for the coronavirus himself last week after being vaccinated and is in self-isolation.

The U.K. went ahead with lifting many of its remaining pandemic restrictions on Monday, including reopening nightclubs, despite concerns about the risks posed by them.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said, “I don’t want to have to close nightclubs again – as they have elsewhere – but it does mean nightclubs need to do the socially responsible thing” and require proof of vaccination, a negative test result, or natural immunity as means of entry.

In Thailand, thirteen provinces are tightening lockdown measures until at least Aug. 2 to combat a surge in cases there. That hasn’t stopped the island of Phuket from reopening to vaccinated foreign visitors, under strict rules, earlier this month.

The government says it vaccinated more than 70% of the island’s population before opening the “Phuket sandbox” in a bid to revive tourism, a key driver of Thailand’s economy badly battered by the pandemic.

Tourism Talanoa: Do what you can

Tourism Talanoa: Do what you can

FHTA, 22 July 2021 – Last week saw the announcement of the much-anticipated Fijian National Budget for 2021/2022. That evening every concerned citizen was attentively glued to their TV and phone, trying to work out how each new measure and initiative being announced was going to affect them, their business, community, industry and eventually how this was all going to help us get our economy back into shape.

Some wise person noted correctly that “The biggest communication problem is that we do not listen to understand, we listen to reply.”

I would like to imagine that many of us in hearing the budget, first tried to understand it and while I also imagine there probably has never existed a perfect budget, I have no doubt there is always fault to find if that is what one seeks only to find.

Let’s face it, the country isn’t in the best fiscal shape, so it is not a huge stretch of the imagination to recognise that given we’ve just had an economic contraction of 15.7 percent in 2020, with a further 4.1 percent contraction projected for this year, (and a loss of over $2 billion in GDP), we need some pragmatic use of what little we do have.

From the early days of this pandemic, the industry had opined quietly but determinedly, that vaccination would be the essential driver in getting the country to the new-normal COVID-19 was enforcing on us globally.

The Fiji Hotel & Tourism Association (FHTA) is, therefore, very encouraged to see that this is one of the 2021/2022 National Budget’s key focus areas with the Ministry of Health & Medical Services being allocated what we hope is what they needed.

Key initiatives announced are expected to address the economic shortfalls with many support programs being continued from last year that is still needed, and new ones being introduced for the unemployed.

As one of the largest employers that were forced to shed workers immediately after borders shut, the focus on income support for the unemployed acknowledges that we still have thousands of Fijians out of work who still need to be provided for.

Continuing in the background with very little acknowledgement or publicity, many tourism operators have been providing for their staff who have been the backbone of the industry with their warmth and smiles, and we are delighted to see that they will receive more assistance in the coming months.

We have no doubt though, that they would rather be back at work earning a living and doing what they love best.

While our economy is not expected to rebound to 2019 levels for at least three years, we remain a little more optimistic. How could we not be in an industry that sells happiness, rest and recreation?

FHTA acknowledges of course, that several key milestones must be achieved beforehand and more business supportive policies introduced or continued to enable a faster industry turnaround.

The focus on vaccination as a condition of employment is the biggest milestone to achieve for Fiji, to get its largest industry back to work under safer work conditions.

Additionally, as a small and developing island nation, Fiji might be getting crushed by this pandemic now, but we have an unwavering belief in the resilience of our people and our ability to get back up again, pick up the pieces and move on forward.

We have seen this time and again over the decades, the industry has continued its progressive and determined growth. Through the worst storms, cyclones, floods, political upheavals and economic downturns.

We are still here and we need to get back to work and the only way to safely manage reopening borders and any interaction with incoming visitors is to ensure that as many people as possible have been vaccinated and therefore stand the best chance of avoiding getting sick or making anyone else sick.

Under the business revival strategies, FHTA welcomes the retention of tax reforms that were introduced last year that the industry has not been able to take advantage of with closed borders and the rippling effect of closed tourism businesses.

From the removal of taxes like STT (6%), the reduction in others like the Environment Climate Adaptation Levy (ECAL) from 10% to 5%, the reduction in departure and alcohol taxes, as well as on import tariffs on around 2,000 items; it is critical to both businesses and supply lines that taxes and consequently contract rates remaining steady, provided the prerequisite business confidence for Fiji to compete internationally.

Welcome news also, was the inclusion this year of other business support measures where fees and charges for licensing and compliance are either being waived or will be paid for by Government through its COVID-19 recovery credit guarantee scheme.

Tourism is never just about hotel rooms near beautiful beaches. If it were, we would never have seen the growth we have had that has contributed to 40% of GDP.

The ability of a tropical destination in a prime location to offer a range of holidays options with a variety of activities in adventure, eco, cultural, marine and nature-based options is what has driven tourism’s phenomenal growth.

Obviously having the friendliest people in the world delivering these options, a world-class national airline and decent infrastructure for a developing island nation press home our advantage.

But it is essentially the large number of SME businesses that both create and drive these opportunities in offering variety and choice to our markets.

So, the supportive initiatives announced to help SME’s meet their operational needs, including payment of wages and salaries, rental cost, utility bills, purchase of stocks and other working capital requirements are far more important than many might otherwise realise.

The Association had identified a need for existing tourism businesses to get reopening-ready and this was granted where depending on the size of the investment, 5-year income tax holidays and customs duty exemptions have been made possible for refurbishing and renovations.

We are preparing for borders to reopen later this year if the 80% adult population vaccination requirement is reached. Anyone who has been closed for over 12 months, in hibernation or operating intermittently at a fraction of their size must plan how they will reopen.

They must grapple with issues like staff access and retraining in new COVID-safe protocols, how much they spend on replenishing food and beverage stocks, whether they renovate and refurbish all their rooms that have been closed or just some, to replace or fix equipment and machinery, landscape overgrown gardens and set up a maintenance program for pools, buildings and seawalls.

If they were transfer providers with either vessels or vehicles; these too will need maintenance and completion of compliance requirements.

In addressing a range of Ease of Doing Business Reforms, the Budget also recognised the need to continue on-going efforts that have no doubt been appreciated by many other businesses and industries.

The further deferral of the VAT Monitoring System (VMS) to Jan 2024 makes practical sense that has been incentivised with businesses voluntarily implementing it is provided with a 300 percent tax deduction for associated costs.

Some initiatives announced to support the current limited cash flow challenges being agonised over by many, so tax penalty waivers on repayment of real tax through payment arrangements will be appreciated.

While others simply make sense, like the implementation and use of EFTPOS machines in all Government agencies where payments and fees are required to be made.

The budget gets reviewed in 6 months.

In the meantime, as Theodore Roosevelt said ” Do what you can, with what you have, where you are”.

By: Fantasha Lockington – CEO, FHTA (Published in the Fiji Times on 22 July 2021)

CAPA Live: Companies must act now to evolve meeting and travel protocols

CAPA Live: Companies must act now to evolve meeting and travel protocols

CTC 22 July 2021 – Successfully adapting to the changing environment will be essential in supporting the momentum of the recovery phase for travel and hospitality industry businesses and the travellers that use them. Now is the all-important time to take action.

Collinson president Asia Pacific, Todd Handcock, said at the Jul-2021 edition of CAPA Live that “companies really need to start acting now to evolve existing meeting and travel protocols”. Mr Handcock said updating protocols will help ensure travellers feel “protected and comfortable” and will help meet upcoming ISO Travel Risk Standard duty of care requirements.

“Testing is going to remain vital for safe resumption of travel for potentially up to the next two to three years” and will remain necessary until vaccination rates reach 70% to 75% in key markets. “Standardised digital health passports will prove to be key” in restoring international travel, he believes. “Governments just won’t reopen borders without trusted, verifiable proof of vaccination,” he added.

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Tourism Talanoa: The Second Half

Tourism Talanoa: The Second Half

FHTA, 15 July 2021 – Last Saturday, we forgot for a brief 80 minutes about COVID-19 and its terrifying grip on our beautiful island nation.

And oh, how the Flying Fijians put it to the mighty All Blacks!

They started the match with a hiss and a roar but the Kiwis eventually proved steadier and better in the latter stages of the first match.

In the end, it didn’t matter what the scoreboard said. A Tier 2 nation provided a gutsy performance in what was always going to be a tough clash against a Tier 1 nation.

This weekend will see the second Test match get underway and we might want to hit the second half of the match the same way we started last week so that things might come out different.

What was never in any doubt though, was the collective national spirit and unbridled patriotism that was being felt around the country by those who could see the eventful match and by every other rugby-mad Fijian around the world.

If only every Fijian in Fiji could have witnessed it as well. But, that’s another story.

As we enter the second half of the year that is fiscally the start of a brand-new financial year for the public sector; anticipation is building as we look forward to the annual National Budget that will be announced by Government tomorrow.

Fiji, now deep into the second wave of COVID-19 infections which has gripped the nation with almost 12,000 total confirmed cases and 58 deaths since March 2020, is in critical need of a clear pathway out of this crisis.

And many hope that pathway, along with getting 80% of our adult population vaccinated, will be defined in the upcoming budget. Or at the very least provides the needed impetus to see our way through it.

The Fiji Hotel and Tourism Association presented its Budget submission to the Ministry of Economy and is hoping, like many other industries who have presented theirs, that we will get some confirmation that we can plan for a more positive second half.

With some pragmatic outcomes to support industries to survive the current crisis and clear strategies for reviving the economy, we can eventually put the last 16 months behind us.

Far too many businesses have been forced to close their doors during this past year and we know too well the effect this has had on increasing unemployment numbers and the subsequent impact on families and livelihoods.

SME’s have been the most impacted and we fear many may have closed their businesses for good.

What is not always recognised is that SME’s make up a large proportion of tourism and other critical industries, and the impact they have on our economy. They play a crucial role in providing job opportunities to the different strata of society and this ensures the flow of money across these many levels.

The tourism industry must be supported by a viable national airline, quality infrastructure and communication networks and globally recognised accommodation brands.

But that is not all a popular holiday destination like Fiji requires to be sustainable and successful, even though we are naturally blessed with over 300 beautiful islands and an abundance of sunshine and friendly people.

We also need many categories of accommodation providers to suit the different budget demands and we need as many varieties of activities and entertainment options located in and around Fiji’s beautiful locations to suit a variety of discerning visitors.

And with this, we need to have a range of transportation options so visitors can get around, and let’s not forget the need for suppliers of food, beverages, fresh produce and training courses, amongst many others.

Hence, the importance of SME’s.

Last year’s budget saw the welcome rescinding of the Service Turnover Tax (STT) and reduction of Environment & Climate Adaptation Levy (ECAL) to 5%, along with the reductions in fiscal and import duties.

However, these initiatives could not make the intended impact they might have, without international visitors while borders remained closed.

So, they need to remain to have the intended impact.

Since its introduction in the 2017-2018 financial year, ECAL collections have totalled F$270.2M of which FJ $255.9 has been used to finance 102 projects that addressed issues like climate change, environmental conservation, and infrastructure. ECAL was largely collected from tourism operators.

As the earner of 46 percent of the country’s total Gross Domestic Product in 2019, tourism has taken an enormous hit that has not just been felt economically.

The bigger impact has been felt and continues to drastically impact the communities that tourism businesses operate from, because of tourism’s large, multiplier effect.

With increased unemployment and lower demand for materials, resources, and fresh produce; there is also reduced economic activity in the communities where tourism is the key employer because of lower or lost incomes.

With the introduction of new traffic light systems, travel corridors and any travel bubbles that may henceforth define what our future tourism outlook might look like, the focus on vaccination programs remains key for Fiji like many other countries.

So, we sincerely hope that the Ministry of Health gets a well-deserved increase in its allocated budget to deal with its now much higher demand on service and operational activities.

For the tourism sector, FHTA has identified the need for critical financial support for businesses to be reopening-ready, prepare to access new markets, consider business diversifications and improve online-commerce capabilities.

Every business regardless of size must be ready to access their staff to refresh and retrain them in the new COVID safe service requirements and be prepared to restock their bars and restaurants, upgrade and service any transport fleet, refurbish rooms and lobbies, mend seawalls and empty swimming pools, trim trees and landscape overgrown gardens.

Fiji will be no different to many other destinations rethinking strategies and reviewing our thinking about where we expect changes might come from so that we grab opportunities to capture new markets if and when presented.

And without any previous experience to base new strategies on, we should consider that the world’s most developed countries have made errors too when addressing or trying to contain this ever-evolving virus. Many of whom are seeing their second or third waves.

We are struggling as well to correctly judge how far ahead to plan for. Whether to start slow and build momentum or fully open with all hands on deck. To trust current trends and focus on traditional markets that may themselves not be ready for us, or take chances on new markets with our rapidly reducing resources.

The world we knew is almost unrecognisable now.

For now, caring about not letting more people die, stopping the spread and vaccinating should be the number one priority for the planet and not just Fiji.

In unsteady waters, we need a steady beacon to guide us back.

Then we can forget the scoreboard and start again.

By: Fantasha Lockington – CEO, FHTA (Published in the Fiji Times on 15 July 2021)

CFC Programme Launches 100% Vaccinated Stamp

CFC Programme Launches 100% Vaccinated Stamp

Tourism Fiji 14 July 2021 – CARE FIJI COMMITMENT-approved operators whose entire teams are fully vaccinated can now access a new communication tool to confirm this important safety measure – the 100% Vaccinated Stamp.

This new feature will be displayed concurrently with the CFC logo to identify businesses that are CFC approved and have had all their staff fully vaccinated.

“We want to ensure safe, yet seamless travel in the new normal and vaccination is a way to foster our collective responsibility in ensuring safety for both operators and consumers throughout the pandemic,” said Tourism Fiji Director of Marketing, Emma Campbell

“As a destination, we are at our best when we align on a clear message and the vaccination toolkit will help the tourism industry communicate and celebrate the amazing progress that Fiji is making in rolling out vaccinations and keeping Fiji safe,”.

To access the 100% Vaccinated Stamp, operators must first be CFC-approved and complete the CFC Vaccination module. They will then fill in a declaration to confirm they have met the relevant criteria. Once the declaration is complete, the business will receive a toolkit to help them promote their achievement through digital channels.

Businesses who have 100% of their staff vaccinated are encouraged to reach out to Tourism Fiji on cfc@tourismfiji.com.fj to discuss next steps with a Tourism Fiji account manager.

Launched in October 2020, the CARE FIJI COMMITMENT PROGRAMME ensures that tourism businesses adopt enhanced safety standards by upskilling operators in COVID-19 mitigation practices and protocols to ensure traveller safety. 252 businesses have registered for the programme with 159 businesses being fully CARE FIJI COMMITMENT approved so far.

In accordance with the Public Health (Amendment) Act 2021, all employers and employees in the private sector and statutory bodies are legally obliged to receive at least one dose of the vaccine by 1 August 2021.

Tourism Fiji continues to encourage other tourism operators and businesses to vaccinate and sign up for the CARE FIJI COMMITMENT programme by visiting www.fiji.travel/CFC  

Brent Hill Appointed Tourism Fiji CEO

Brent Hill Appointed Tourism Fiji CEO

Nadi, July 12, 2021 – TOURISM Fiji has today announced the appointment of experienced tourism marketing senior executive, Brent Hill as Chief Executive Officer. Hill, who most recently was the Executive Director of Marketing for the South Australian Tourism Commission, brings over 16 years of experience in tourism and digital marketing, advertising, branding, communications, campaign and executive strategy to Fiji’s National Tourism Office. He replaces former CEO Matt Stoeckel, whose tenure ended in December 2020.

Commenting on Hill’s appointment, Tourism Fiji Chairman Mr Andre Viljoen said: “We’re delighted to welcome someone of Brent’s calibre to this critically important role not just for Fijian tourism, but for the Fijian economy. Brent shone through in the extremely rigorous recruitment process initiated and conducted by the Board with PwC’s assistance, for a CEO to lead Tourism Fiji in these unprecedented times, where international tourism activity has been zero for over a year now. His proven expertise, experience and ideas for the industry’s revival are a perfect fit for Fiji’s current requirements.

Mr. Viljoen added: “When border restrictions ease and travel resumes, Fiji will need dynamism and creativity in marketing itself as an attractive, aspirational and safe destination. We are in the same situation as every other leisure tourism destination in the world. All of us are going for the same markets, which are now smaller with lower discretionary spending ability. Brent is highly regarded in the industry given his many accomplishments, and we will need his wide range of existing relationships and management skills with key global trade partners to market our destination, and his excellent communications skills to rally our industry and stakeholders to a common purpose. His immediate focus will be to work with the Board and Fiji’s extremely competent health authorities to restore tourism activity.”

Fijian Minister for Tourism, the Honourable Faiyaz Koya also welcomed Brent Hill’s appointment as Tourism Fiji’s CEO, stating: “Restoring tourism activity will not only restore jobs for hundreds of thousands of Fijians, it will also significantly contribute to the revival of the economy through the industry’s multiplier effect. We are turning the corner now with the rollout of our national vaccination programme in anticipation of market re-entry beyond our traditional markets. This sets the scene for Mr Hill and Tourism Fiji to position Fiji as the ideal destination for not only our Aussie and Kiwi friends, but for those that are ready to travel. We will also look to him to pair our globally renowned values of true Fijian hospitality, friendliness and authenticity to the demands and expectations of the modern-day traveller. With Mr Hill at the helm of Tourism Fiji, we are a step closer to strategically positioning Fiji in the global market again.”

In his immediate past role as Executive Director of Marketing for the South Australian Tourism Commission, Hill was credited for growing total tourism expenditure in the region from A$5.3B to A$8.1B in a four year period (a 53% increase). He also led South Australian tourism’s recovery following the devastating bushfires in the state by developing successful campaigns to re-generate industry business. He was also responsible for a A$30M annual marketing budget and 55 staff across the world to market South Australia.

Hill has a Bachelor of Commerce majoring in Marketing and Accounting from the University of Adelaide, is a Certified Practising Marketer (FAMI) and a Patron of the Australian Marketing Institute. He has multiple awards for marketing campaigns over the years, and between 2018 – 2020, has ranked in the top 25 of CMO Magazine’s Top 50 Marketers in Australia.

He is a patron of the South Australian Marketing Institute, a Board Member of the Adelaide Thunderbirds netball organisation, ATDW, Goldilocks smart suits, and Ripple Effect.

The Minister for Tourism, Board and Management of Tourism Fiji, take this opportunity to thank the Acting CEO, Robert Thompson. Mr Thompson has been remarkable support, to both the industry and Government, having led the organisation during this difficult time.

Unravelling the mystery of Word-of-Mouth

Unravelling the mystery of Word-of-Mouth

eHotelier 8 July 2021 – Historically Word-of-Mouth (WOM) has been important for tourism and hospitality, because we know that customers very rarely make decisions in isolation. Customers select sources of information that they perceive as useful, trustworthy, insightful and easily accessible, which will help them make decisions. So, as the hospitality industry emerges from the pandemic, WOM will be more important than ever.

What is Word-of-Mouth?
At its core, WOM is an informal exchange of information between people that is non-commercial in nature; in reality, it is so much more. It has always been considered the most powerful form of influence, because it provides a balance of information and opinion, within a known context that is expressed in a setting, which provides the flexibility to ‘tailor make’ the message. However, WOM has traditionally been considered in a simplistic view of ‘positive’ or ‘negative’ WOM. This sells WOM short as it overlooks the different types of WOM and the nature of the exchange.

There are three main types of WOM. The first main form of WOM is discussion of brand name. This relates directly to a brand names raised in discussion for example multi-national tourism and hospitality products, such as hotel chains, for example Hyatt, Sofitel, Accor.

When there is informational WOM, which is usually descriptive information that may include attribute details. In the hotel management context this might encompass information, such as pricing, opening hours, parking, food availability, directions, weather, access and various other details.

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Tourism Support for Government’s ‘No Jab No Job’ Requirement

Tourism Support for Government’s ‘No Jab No Job’ Requirement

The Fiji Hotel and Tourism Association (FHTA) is buoyed and supportive of Government’s recent announcement on the vaccination requirement.

The announcement supports the tourism industry’s reasoning that with vaccinated staff and therefore safer workplaces, we keep our people, our communities and our customers safe.

FHTA has maintained this industry-supported stance since vaccines were first approved to protect the populace from this virus and its variants and our members remain keen to support the logistical efforts of getting our staff fully vaccinated, with many tourism operators already confirming fully vaccinated staff numbers.

While initially proposing policy requirements to support tourism industry employers requiring vaccinations as a safety measure, the recently announced mandatory requirement has been welcomed by the Association as this will simplify the process.

FHTA Chief Executive Officer, Fantasha Lockington said “Fijis tourism industry has been at forefront of adapting to new COVID-safe protocols and the pro-vaccination efforts by encouraging staff to be vaccinated through providing clear communication and vaccine information support. We urge all eligible citizens regardless of employment status to get vaccinated in the national interest”.

FHTA reiterates tourism’s full support for the current vaccination exercise being undertaken around the country, reflected in the west having the highest uptake of vaccines so far with 67% having received their first jabs and 15% their second jabs.

The Association continues to actively campaign for its members and is optimistic that with more employers supporting the need for vaccinations to keep the Fijian population safer, more people will soon be able to confidently focus on safer business activities.

Tourism Talanoa: We All Know What To Do

Tourism Talanoa: We All Know What To Do

FHTA, 8 July 2021 – As we move into another week of this second wave of high volumes of COVID-19 infections, Suva City has introduced an innovative drive-through vaccination option to cope with the influx of people seeking protection from the deadly virus.

The line of vehicles lining up to access this service at Suva’s Albert Park pavilion is inspiring to see and we applaud all those citizens that are making use of this opportunity to get vaccinated.

It’s highly plausible that Fiji will reach its targeted vaccination target of eligible adults in the coming months if the demand remains at current levels. We have achieved 54 per cent of first-doses for the target population while a total of 9 per cent have now received both doses and are considered fully vaccinated against COVID-19 once they move past the 2 weeks post receiving the last vaccination.

Vaccines are effective at preventing COVID-19 disease, especially severe illness and death and reduce the risk of people spreading the disease further.

Some people have shared the experiences of getting their elderly parents and even grandmothers making the often-difficult effort to get vaccinated, including a young lady with her 101-year-old grandmother. All shared the same concern about doing their bit and caring that those around them are protected.

A remarkable effort indeed from senior citizens that puts to shame some members of our society with little to no regard for their fellow citizens, members of their community or their families.

If the elderly and compromised can get the vaccine, your excuse ‘not’ to be vaccinated is invalid, inconsiderate, uninformed and unpatriotic.

The 7-day average of new cases per day in Fiji has increased to 383 cases per day or 433 cases per million population per day.

With the increasing case numbers, there have been also been increasing numbers of people with severe effects and far too more deaths in the Suva-Nausori containment zone.

This is of deep concern to many of us doing all we can to practice and adopt the protocols that keep us safer.

The tourism industry has seen many of its workers get inoculated and several hotel properties have joined the increasing numbers of businesses jubilantly confirming that they are 100 per cent vaccinated.

We thank them for their perseverance and patriotism in seeing that all who were eligible received the vaccines because we understand that this has not been easy to achieve.

As the annual National Budget announcement by the Government looms near, the tourism industry is refocusing efforts to ensure we can lay critical pathways in preparation for the much-awaited reopening of borders.

There has never been any doubt that a vaccinated workforce will be a critical factor in a border reopening framework, with the reciprocal expectation of international visitors being able to confirm their vaccinated and COVID free status.

Still, the misinformation exists and is perpetuated by those who remain vehemently against getting the jab. Their choice to not be vaccinated is their universal right of refusal but they shouldn’t be influencing those around them who may be more gullible.

If their family or friends choose not to be vaccinated due to their misinformation and fall ill and possible die, the onus must be on the carrier of fake news to shoulder that guilt.

Our villages and settlements are rife with murmurings to that effect and this could hamper Fiji’s drive to reach our target population requirement of 80%.

Due to current regulations on social distancing, the Ministry of Health & Medical Services is actively recruiting COVID Ambassadors who will ensure that all health protocols set by MOHMS is adhered to and the correct protection is being worn in all areas following the reopening of many businesses.

Despite these innovative moves to ensure compliance, if the naysayers achieve what they set out for, which is standing against vaccination, Fiji will have no other option than to move into the next phase.

That would be moving our focus and resources from total virus suppression to entirely virus management.

That is not the preferred scenario obviously because the only losers will be unvaccinated.

Israel has been serving as an example to other countries as it went through a similar second wave of Delta-variant COVID infections recently.

Israeli health officials were more focused on hospitalisations and deaths, which has remained relatively low and in the past two weeks, their health ministry has recorded only one death from COVID-19. In January, at the height of the country’s second wave, it was recording close to 80 deaths per day.

When we read these staggering figures, we simply cannot imagine that happening in Fiji.

We must NOT let that happen.

Our level of civil disobedience and breaking of national regulations therefore should be of great concern to more people.

We do not just want to protect our families, our people and our communities from getting sick. Neither is it just about getting to a point where we can reopen our borders safely and get back to business and kickstarting our struggling economy.

These are certainly important milestones.

However, many more people are missing their loved ones because the current situation has forced them to stay apart because of work in high-risk areas like medical and emergency services, or because of the containment zones restricting movement, while closed borders for 16 months have forced millions around the world apart.

And let’s not forget the current inability to feel “human” again that includes being able to give and see a smile without masks, to shake hands and embrace, to share stories, food, kava and love with family and friends on special occasions.

To be able to see a sick loved one in a hospital or pay our respects in our own personal, traditional ways at a funeral, wedding or birth.

Those small but very important elements make us feel like we are part of society or communities and make us feel inherently connected.

Let’s not allow this virus to take those things away from us that connected us and made us who we still are.
We know what to do.

By: Fantasha Lockington – CEO, FHTA (Published in the Fiji Times on 8 July 2021)

Radisson Blu Resort Fiji delivered $10,000 worth of Staff Assistance

Radisson Blu Resort Fiji delivered $10,000 worth of Staff Assistance

Since the second wave of Covid-19 in April, with lockdowns and travel restrictions, life has not come easy to anyone in Fiji, especially in the Tourism Industry. Radisson Blu Resort Fiji continued to stay open for business 7 days a week and looked at strategies and opportunities to sustain business and to provide jobs for the staff. The outbreak and lockdowns that followed brought the business to a critically low occupancy level and subsequently reducing employee numbers and working hours for almost 3 months now.

To assist their team during these difficult times, Radisson Blu Resort Fiji has delivered $10,000 worth of groceries shopping vouchers and packs for their staff and families who have been affected since the outbreak on April 21.

‘Our colleagues are the main asset of our company, they have contributed to the success of our business, and we are determined to assist and look after them and their families to the best of our capabilities. To make it easier and safer for them, we delivered the vouchers to their homes to spare them unnecessary movements and risks. I hope that with the vaccination efforts we will be able to return quickly to a normal operation and be able to bring them back to work’, says General Manager, Mr Charles Homsy.

Tourism Looks Forward to Industry Support from 2021/2022 National Budget to Survive and Recover

Tourism Looks Forward to Industry Support from 2021/2022 National Budget to Survive and Recover

FHTA 30 June 2021 – The Fiji Hotel and Tourism Association (FHTA) appreciated the recent opportunity to consult with the Ministry of Economy to discuss the National Budget expectations, sharing that the industry must first survive the current crisis to emerge safer and ready to do business in what is emerging as a changed COVID focused world.

With the previous support from last years budget only being able to make a significant impact with borders reopened and international visitors returning; tourism’s major contribution to foreign exchange earnings, employment and large, beneficial multiplier effects on the economy are on pause until it can be supported to survive through clear and specific recovery strategies.

“Our focus is on recovery and revitalisation,” says Ms Lockington.

Ms Lockington added “It was a great opportunity for us to present directly to the minister and give him first-hand information on what the industry is going through and areas the industry needed critical support”

FHTA has requested for the current level of taxes and duties to remain for at least the next 3 years, for financial support through government initiatives and as well as bank assistance for hotels to be revamped and refurbished after an extended period of closures, and to restocked to receive guests

Pre-COVID, the tourism sector was responsible for bringing in over 40 per cent of the country’s foreign exchange earnings and was a major tax contributor.

Almost 16 months after borders closed, SME businesses that form the core of the tourism industry are closed and cash strapped, with many hanging on by a thread.

“When tourism is on its feet again, the Fijian economy rebounds,” said Ms Lockington. “But this means that Fiji needs to have all its available products and services ready to welcome back visitors, including the different accommodation options, activities, transport systems, tours and supply lines who are now either closed or struggling to stay open”.

FHTA has also assured the Government of the industry’s full support for the current vaccination programme being undertaken around the country, reflected in the west having the highest uptake of vaccines so far.

The Association continues to actively campaign for its members and is optimistic that with more employers supporting the need for vaccinations to keep the Fijian population safer, they will soon be able to focus on more business activity.

Tourism Talanoa: Stemming the Flow

Tourism Talanoa: Stemming the Flow

FHTA, 1 July 2021 – Hindsight, they say, is 20/20.

The ability to sit back and analyse and dissect past events or instances is a joy that most, especially critics, can find solace (or pleasure!) in doing.

There has been quite a few should-have, could-have and would-have but they don’t change the fact that we are where we are right now.

This second wave has consistently recorded 300 plus confirmed COVID cases daily for the past few days and that tells us that the highly contagious Delta variant of COVID-19 is no average virus for which most vaccines were initially planned to protect us from.

Even our neighbour to the West, Australia, is grappling with several community outbreaks of the extremely contagious out Delta variant, with a wave of restrictions rolling across the country and plunging some cities into lockdown for the first time since the pandemic began.

Sydney, Darwin and Perth have gone into full-blown lockdowns and light restrictions have been implemented in Adelaide and Canberra.

Australia has not reached our numbers of infections and confirmed cases in the current situation and the rapid response with mitigative measures have been put into place to counter their currently low vaccination numbers.

Fiji’s total vaccinated adults is around 7 percent of the target recipients, or 80% of our total population, with 49 percent having received the first dose of vaccine by the 29th of June.

The outbreak in Australia pales in comparison to Fiji’s but both nations enjoyed a charmed life in the early days despite the global pandemic due to the rigid rules that were implemented from when international borders closed.

New Zealand has paused its Trans-Tasman bubble for a few days as Australia manages this new wave of infections and we have no doubt that Fiji is paying close attention because these two nations are our tourism industry’s key target markets.

Visitors from these countries accounted for at least 75 percent of total visitors into Fiji pre-COVID.

We believe we were actually getting closer to being included in the Trans-Tasman bubble until the current wave started. Or at the very least, being considered.

So, we know what we’re capable of, what is required of us and, we have a fairly good grasp of what lies ahead.

We just need to tame this beast in front of us.

How? And this might start to sound like we are repeating ourselves (and we are), but it is clear to those of us in the tourism industry that getting vaccinated, following the current health regulations and changing our current behaviour is our only chance to get out of this.

By staying in our own bubbles, washing or sanitising our hands, keeping our distance from others and avoiding crowds. By calling 158 or 917 if you see gatherings or other violations of Fiji’s health measures. By being the best patriotic versions of ourselves and doing the right thing, at the right time.

Many of us fail to realise how difficult this might be for many people to actually do though.

If the only way you know to survive is to go out and sell your fresh produce, the baked goods you prepare daily, the items you sew each night or to do work you are paid daily for; your alternative options are limited.

If you choose to stay home because it is deemed safer, or because they locked down your residential area, then you must rely on others to provide the food you can no longer buy, with money you could not earn.

The reliance on others to support you and your family may impact your self-esteem and if this support comes late or intermittently, can also affect your mental health.

Just a few areas that many of us that are more fortunate may not fully appreciate.

On the positive side, our rugby 7s teams, both the men’s and women’s teams, had a wonderful weekend of rugby this past week and they have provided some very positive messaging for fans to follow in their successful strides by getting fully vaccinated.

Even our rugby champions have been vaccinated to not only protect themselves, their teammates and families, but to ensure they could travel abroad and play against any other team.

And yet, we are still seeing resistance in many of our communities.

The tourism industry has been at the forefront of getting all employees vaccinated and this has probably been easier to implement in an industry that has had to implement the COVID safe protocols early.

That is not to say we have not faced some resistance, but only that we have had more time to work on our collective communication efforts and monitor where we need to work harder on efforts.

This is despite the vast amounts of misinformation and well shared false claims on the virus and/or the vaccine. Suddenly social media is awash with overnight medical ‘experts’ extolling the virtues of not getting the vaccine.

These false prophets might be harmless enough but can be disruptive if they are believed and become self-professed influencers.

But we can and must learn from them to derail them at their own games.

What can each of us do to get the right messages out and ensure we protect Fiji?

Speak out on the positives. Share your stories and why protecting your family, friends, colleagues or customers is important.

Share your pictures. Explain the science and provide the evidence. Talanoa, listen and discuss the concerns people have and help them to understand.

In the language of preference, by people they respect and will heed or at the very least to consider.

While we still have some way to go for a fully vaccinated industry, there are many operators who are already happy to share their success because they know they have a critical layer of protection in place, and can now focus on their reopening strategies.

We are extremely proud of the bulk of our tourism staff who have been loyal and fully onboard with what it means to be vaccinated. Thousands of them rushed to their nearest vaccination station and did their bit despite the naysayers.

And that’s how the entire tourism fraternity continues to plan for receiving international guests, despite the current wave of infections and negative press.

We are focusing on survival.

We are focusing on recovery.

We are focusing on coming back better and stronger.

We need our staff to get back to work.

We need our tourism business machinery to start humming again to make Fiji the destination of choice again.

We need our suppliers to get to work so our once fruitful relationships can recommence.

We need all the ancillary SME businesses we cannot do without to be back up and running again.

Bottom line, we need our national economy to begin to hum again.

Sounds simple? That’s because it actually is.

Spread that positive vaccination message.

By: Fantasha Lockington – CEO, FHTA (Published in the Fiji Times on 1 July 2021)

COVID-19 made deep-sea mining more tempting for some Pacific islands

COVID-19 made deep-sea mining more tempting for some Pacific islands

The Conversation 15 June 2021 – While most Pacific islands have escaped the worst of COVID-19, a cornerstone of their economies, tourism, has taken a big hit. By June 2020, visitor arrivals in Fiji, Samoa, Tonga and Vanuatu had completely ceased, as borders were closed and even internal travel restricted. In Fiji, where tourism generated about 40% of GDP before the pandemic, the economy contracted by 19% in 2020.

One economic alternative lies just offshore. The Clarion-Clipperton Zone (CCZ) is a deep-sea trench spanning 4.5 million square kilometres in the central Pacific Ocean between Hawaii and Mexico. On its seabed are potato-sized rocks called polymetallic nodules which contain nickel, copper, cobalt and manganese. These formed over centuries through the accumulation of iron and manganese around debris such as shells or sharks’ teeth.

There are estimated to be around 21 billion tonnes of manganese nodules in this trench alone, and demand for these metals is likely to skyrocket as the world ramps up the development of batteries for electric vehicles and renewable power grids.

While much of the CCZ lies beneath the high seas where no single state has control, it’s adjacent to the exclusive economic zones of several Pacific island states, including the Cook Islands, Kiribati, Nauru and Tonga. Lacking the means to search for the metals themselves, these states have sponsored mining companies to take out licences with the International Seabed Authority (ISA), which is responsible for sustainably managing the seabed in international waters. This would allow these companies to explore the seabed and determine how viable mining is likely to be, and its potential environmental impact.

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How hospitality is adapting to a contactless world

How hospitality is adapting to a contactless world

eHotelier 25 June 2021 – The pandemic led to an increase in contactless technology and experiences in the hospitality industry, and even as we return to a new normal, many of these innovations are likely to stick. A hotelier’s job is to make guests comfortable, and if guests have become accustomed to new ways of doing things, then hotels will need to accommodate.

However, instead of removing the personal touch, contactless technology can actually provide a more pleasant — and personalized — experience for guests. Throughout 2020, hospitality and travel companies found ways to provide memorable experiences while improving health and safety standards. It’s also nothing new — as people do more on their phones, online retail companies have been developing strategies and systems for years that hotels can now take advantage of. Virtual tours, video, streaming, and other tech tools are quickly becoming necessities for hoteliers.

Guest expectations have changed
Guests are eager to have more control when it comes to their own experiences, and they want hotels to provide a simple (yet functional) digital experience that reaches across all departments. They want choices when it comes to communicating with the hotel, being able to pick up whichever device is nearest to make requests, update reservations, and manage their stay. Guests also want convenience. This includes not having to wait for a waiter to make a payment at the end of a meal, skipping the front desk entirely, or not having to pick up the phone to order their car from the valet. It’s control and convenience — plain and simple.

The importance of data for a contactless experience

We expect data management to become more important in day-to-day hospitality operations, especially in on-property activities, guest preferences, hotel restaurants, and facilities used for events and conferences. If we have data online that’s entered by guests and easily accessible by staff, we don’t need to have people bother with keypads or give that information to a worker on-site in close contact. And as elements of the hotel experience that were once done in-person switch to digital, the potential synergy means new levels of personalization and efficiency.

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Hotel brands have lost more than a third of their worth

Hotel brands have lost more than a third of their worth

CTC 24 June 2021 – The world’s top 50 most hotel brands have lost more than a third of their worth as nearly USD23 billion is wiped from their value.

The total value of the top 50 most valuable hotel brands has decreased -33% year-on-year, down from USD70.2 billion in 2020 to USD47.4 billion in 2021, according to the new 2021 edition of Brand Finance’s Hotels 50 report, an annual review of the most valuable and strongest hotel brands.

Hilton Hotels & Resorts once again is the world’s most valuable hotel brands, despite recording a -30% drop in brand value to USD7.6 billion. While Hilton’s revenue has taken a significant hit since the outbreak of the pandemic, the brand is “showing confidence in its growth strategy,” according to the report, announcing a further 17,400 rooms to its pipeline, bringing the total to over 400,000 new rooms planned – an uplift of +8% on the previous year. Hilton also boasts the most valuable hotel portfolio, with its seven brands that feature in the ranking reaching a total brand value of USD13.8 billion.

Hilton’s rival, Marriott International (down -60% to USD2.4 billion), has dropped down to the fifth spot from second, after losing more than half of its brand value. Last year, the brand’s worldwide revenue available per room was down -60% from 2019 and global occupancy was just 36% for the year.

Hyatt moves up into the second spot, up from third, bucking the sector trend as one of only two brands in the ranking to record brand value growth, +up 4% to USD4.7 billion): the other being Conrad, which has seen a +11.9% rise in brand value.

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Staff and guests at Radisson Blu fully vaccinated

Fijis-Number-1-Family-Resort-Radisson-Blu-Resort-Fiji

All staff and guests staying in-house at the Radisson Blu Resort have been fully vaccinated.

General Manager Charles Homsy says considering the current COVID-19 situation – the resort has tightened its policies and has implemented strict booking protocols.

The resort is open 7 days a week and is a non-quarantine property.

Homsy says they are committed to doing their part and contributing in the effort to prevent the further spread of COVID-19.

Being certified with CareFIJI Commitment, he adds the resort has implemented a number of mandatory policies and regulations as well.

The resort has also acknowledged the Ministry of Health and frontline workers for their response efforts.

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Tourism Talanoa: It’s Worth Your Consideration

Tourism Talanoa: It’s Worth Your Consideration

FHTA, 24 June 2021 – As Fiji crossed the 2,000 mark this week in total COVID positive cases, one thing has become glaringly clear in these past few months of second wave transmissions and infections.

There is a critical need to ramp up our vaccinations and share more widely, the very real repercussions if we do not succeed in doing so.

We realise that we have many people who have accepted that this is the safest and most sensible thing to do, just as much as we acknowledge that there are slightly more people that still need to be convinced, are not sure or simply have not made a decision because they do not appreciate the tenuous situation Fiji is in.

Those unwilling have been resolute in their beliefs, and we respect their decision.

But how do we get the willing (and yet to be vaccinated) and those still on the fence to get vaccinated?

From free beers to lottery tickets, many locations around the world have introduced vaccine incentives.

A village in Indonesia is giving out live chickens. A town in the Netherlands is offering fish and even the state of Ohio in America allows vaccinated adults to enter the draw for five US$1 million cash prizes.

Yes, US$5 million in cash. For a needle in your arm that could ultimately save your life, the lives of those around you and determine whether Fiji will be able to open up her borders again.

From one end of the spectrum to the other, the need to make vaccines appealing and a must-have for adults is as necessary as ever, especially for Fiji.

As incentives go, these examples may just be the beginning of where things may move so we can eventually “get on with our lives”.

Countries around the world have practised hard lockdowns in various forms and these have been challenging for families, businesses and entire cities both financially, economically and psychologically.

Whether impacted by the trauma of sickness and death from COVID around them or having to suffer through lockdowns and restricted movements; once the vaccines became available, it appeared easier to convince the larger proportion of most of these affected populations to get vaccinated to get their curtailed freedoms back and ensure they could save more people from contracting the virus.

Despite calls from many avenues for harder lockdowns in Fiji, doing so ignores what the fabric of our society is really made up of.

If for example only 30% of our population pays taxes and around 40% are below the tax bracket, what is the size of our informal sector who depend on daily wages to provide food and shelter for their families?

Remove the ability to access this daily wage because of the current restrictions and business closures, and we put an already fragile part of the population at greater risk.

So, lockdowns might work in developed countries with access to easy credit, wage support and insurance amongst other supportive programs; but unless we have better social nets to support our own less fortunate people, we are simply pretending they don’t exist, or do not appreciate the need for more support from those of us fortunate enough to still have a job and bank accounts.

We must therefore all collectively convince those who are undecided or against being vaccinated, just why they should vaccinate or must make up their minds and get vaccinated as quickly as possible.

Because surely, that should be the far simpler and less traumatic thing to do than locking us all up and telling us not to move around, while many of our own people will be forced to rely on the goodwill of social workers and the Government to provide food and medicine.

What would incentivise more people to accept being vaccinated? An incentive is something that motivates, rouses or encourages and convinces us that we should make a decision or take a recommended action.

What has motivated people in Fiji before?

Rugby teams winning in grand style, religious leaders moving their congregations because their words have touched people’s hearts or musicians singing rousing renditions of old favourites that bring tears to the eyes?

What incentivised the recent causes of queues stretching for blocks in towns and cities around Fiji, with people waiting patiently for hours in the sun and rain?

From access to work to entry into restaurants, free coffee and the chance to win money, the list is steadily growing for innovative incentives to get people to get vaccinated or ensure they complete their second dose.

In Fiji’s case, that means two doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, spaced out between eight to ten weeks.

As the tourism industry continues to thrash out detailed plans for a safe post-pandemic return to some form of new-normalcy, one important piece of the puzzle is employee vaccinations.

We are also recognising that some of our tourism workforces have also been hesitant about getting vaccinated for some reason or another, and we continue to diligently provide support and access to factual information to ensure they have everything they need to make their decisions.

But, when all is said and done, we will support our industry’s employers to access the best advice on the policies they must have in place to ensure they can confirm that only vaccinated workers, and therefore a safer workforce, is in place before those borders reopen.

It then falls onto the employers to remind their employees that taking the vaccine isn’t just a positive individual action, but rather a collective embrace of the greater good for the nation.

That might be a lot of pressure.

In comparison to Fiji’s borders remaining closed for the rest of the year and even next year, however, that pressure does not come close.

These are difficult times we all agreed in 2020 when COVID first shut international borders. It is now a whole year on and we are losing our grip on keeping our communities safe, with infections rising and already far too many deaths.

Local employment experts indicate that while the personal choice and freedom of an individual are well protected, employers are within their rights to cease employment if being vaccinated is essential to carrying out one’s duties.

That would be the case with many tourism operations that have a majority of staff that interact with or share spaces with guests. The vaccination requirement will be added to the list of protection tourism workers will need to come to work along with safety shoes, face masks, uniforms and relevant work tools.

What has been a positive for the industry so far, is the general acceptance, understanding and eagerness of the majority of our industry staff to be a part of the vaccinated statistics.

That’s Fiji’s tourism sector in a nutshell – always looking to go above and beyond to get the industry moving in the right direction.

We know there is no other way that the borders will reopen until the target of 80 per cent is reached.

We can incentivise the vaccinations, make it a simpler process, communicate at the levels that our people need to be engaged with and appeal to everyone to spread positive information on getting vaccinated.

It makes economic sense and will shorten our current, collective pain eventually.

By: Fantasha Lockington – CEO, FHTA (Published in the Fiji Times on 24 June 2021)

Tourism Support for COVID-19 Vaccination Programme

Tourism Support for COVID-19 Vaccination Programme

Fiji Hotel and Tourism Association (FHTA) fully supports the Fijian government’s current nationwide vaccination campaign.

This was endorsed by the FHTA Executive Committee during its meeting on Friday 18th June 2021.

The current vaccination campaign is targeting the inoculation of 80% of Fiji’s adult population and is working towards ensuring this critical layer of protection supports the industry’s current adoption of the COVID safe practices that have been in place since April last year.

FHTA continues to encourage all eligible adults in the tourism industry and surrounding communities that it operates within to be vaccinated to keep our staff, guests and communities safe.

While the Association acknowledges that workers have the choice to not be vaccinated, FHTA supports the rights of tourism employers to require vaccination as a condition of employment for the protection of all and will guide members accordingly.

The Association has always maintained that COVID safe practices of frequent hand washing, social distancing, avoiding crowds and the wearing of masks be part of the industry’s new normal.

Chief Executive Officer of FHTA Ms Fantasha Lockington said “We recognise that it is only through a sufficiently vaccinated population that we will be able to safely and effectively reopen our borders to allow tourism to once again become the major contributor to foreign exchange earnings, provide the highest employment options and restart its multiplier effects and benefits throughout the economy.”

Making sense of your competitive landscape today

Making sense of your competitive landscape today

Competition comes in many forms. A hotelier may think the two international branded properties on their street are their biggest threats, but in reality, anything from a resort in a different state to a family member’s house can be in competition with a hotel’s ability to sell its rooms and services. While it is easy to overlook these indirect competitors, it is just as easy to assume certain hotels are main competitors, when a closer look may reveal otherwise.

To accurately benchmark against the competition, it is crucial that hoteliers understand who their true competitors are. Today, a hotel’s competitive set will have been impacted by COVID-19 market disruptions. Properties that used to be your competitors may no longer be targeting the same business (or targeting any business at all if they’re no longer operational). Conversely, a property you never considered to be in competition with you—perhaps because they were a higher rated business-focused hotel and you primarily target the leisure market—is now producing compelling family packages with better amenities, at competitive rates to your own.

So how do you benchmark against your competition when no one appears to be swimming in the same lane anymore? Hoteliers must ask themselves: what happened to their competitive environment, who are their competitors now, and what impact are they having on their own business?

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Tips to outsmart the competition in the post-COVID hotel market

Tips to outsmart the competition in the post-COVID hotel market

eHotelier 18 June 2021 – As travel slowly begins to recover, a renewed hospitality market is emerging. Most notably, travellers’ behaviour has been drastically affected by the pandemic, which is bound to impact the way hotels envision their acquisition strategy for years to come. Properly handling this radical shift in the market is no small task and will require hotels to demonstrate both long-term foresight and impeccable execution to thrive.

Moreover, we can expect the post-COVID hospitality industry to grow increasingly competitive. Indeed, the lengthy period of lockdown, during which hotels saw very little to no commercial activity, gave hospitality professionals the time to pause and reflect on their future strategy. As soon as borders start to reopen, most hotels’ marketing efforts will be in full swing and missing that recovery train will likely spell doom on unprepared establishments.

The purpose of this article is to leave no hotel behind in the post-pandemic rebuilding process. By considering and applying the subsequent five pieces of advice, hotels ought to be able to enter the recovery market with confidence and start working towards sustainable success.

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