[코로나19 국내 발생 2년] The travel industry has been trampled on…  ‘Red lights’ everywhere

[코로나19 국내 발생 2년] The travel industry has been trampled on… ‘Red lights’ everywhere


Two years have passed since the first confirmed case of COVID-19 in Korea on January 20, 2020. In the meantime, vaccines and treatments for COVID-19 have been developed and distributed, but the travel industry is still in a miserable state. I checked the scars scratched by Corona 19 over the past two years with various statistics.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, countries around the world have tightened entry and exit conditions. Foreigners were banned from entering the country and self-isolated for 14 days, but after the vaccine was distributed, the conditions for entry and exit changed frequently, such as setting a vaccination certificate or COVID-19 PCR negative confirmation as essential documents for entry.

The overseas travel market was never perfect. In 2019, before Corona 19, the number of outbound travelers from Korea stood at 28,74,251, which was about to break the 30 million mark. However, in the aftermath of COVID-19, the number dropped to 4,276,006 in 2020 and to 1,083,115 in 2021 (January to November). In two years, about 27.63 million people (-96%) have evaporated. Even that, it is estimated that most of the demand for essential purposes such as public work, business, and study abroad was more than travel. The number of foreign arrivals has also shrunk significantly as Korea has always taken a hard line on foreign entry. The number of foreigners visiting Korea plummeted from 17.52,623 in 2019 to 2519,118 in 2020 and 876,853 in 2021 (January to November).

Immigration restrictions also affected air traffic. The number of international flights and passengers reached the bottom in 2021, just like the number of inbound and outbound passengers. In 2019, the number of international flights reached 528,243 based on departures and arrivals, but in 2020, it decreased by 68.3% to 167,214, and in 2021, it was only 131,450, which is a 75.1% decrease from 2019. The number of international passengers is more negative. The number of international passengers fell 96.4% from 90,385,640 in 2019 to 3,09364 in 2021.

A positive indicator was found on domestic flights. In the case of domestic flights, from 195,349 in 2019 to 212,690 in 2021, it is rather an increase of 8.9% compared to pre-COVID-19. The number of domestic passengers also increased 0.5% from 32,980,968 in 2019 to 33,146,646 in 2021, returning to the pre-COVID-19 level. This is the result of airlines with limited wingspans for domestic flights, increasing supply by serving various domestic routes, and travel demand shifting toward the domestic market in a situation where it is difficult to travel abroad.

As such, overseas travel restrictions hit the travel industry. As the business became impossible for a long time, the number of travel agencies that closed and the number of people who left the industry increased. According to the ‘Tourism Industry Survey 2020’ released by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism in December last year, the number of people employed in the travel industry decreased by 40.2% from 103,311 in 2019 to 61,884 in 2020. Sales are even more shocking. Travel industry sales jumped 95% from 8,627.1 billion won in 2019 to 435.4 billion won in 2020. The year 2021 has not yet been counted, but if you look at the number of international flights and passengers, it is presumed that the situation would have gotten worse. The number of quarterly national travel business registrations of the Korea Tourism Association fell from 22,283 in the fourth quarter of 2019 to 21,231 in the third quarter of 2021, down 4.7%. However, it is analyzed that the business has been shut down in a state where it is practically impossible to operate and has been shutting down.

By Son Go-eun, staff reporter [email protected]


www.traveltimes.co.kr

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