Travelling in Covid Times

Tourism contributes to 9.2% of India’s total GDP. Hence proving, a major part of India is dependent on it for its bread and butter. With the distressing hit of COVID-19 the industry and its people have suffered walloping losses. For a country like ours that has remained under a scrupulous lockdown for over two months, travelling is now on top of the priority list for most people. Fraught with dangers and sealed state borders even people stuck away from their home were forbidden to move.

According to numbers stated by the government, the number of visitors to the newly built Status of Unity dropped by 38 percent from January to February suffering a loss of approximately INR 5 Cr in the total collected revenue. Well, that was the case when the virus was not at its peak. One cannot even imagine the capital lost after the lock-down was laid.

Apart from this, the aviation industry which is directly allied with travel and tourism has also been drastically affected by the Covid-19 virus which has now taken up the scale of a pandemic. According to the reports provided, airlines around the world have lost in passenger revenues of about $113 billion. With relaxations on lockdown norms in India and around the world, things are slowly getting their way back to the track but still losses suffered by them are immeasurable due to which companies have sacrificed on tonnes of jobs.

According to a report by KPMG, a total of 30 million Indians involved in the travel tourism and associated industries will lose their job in this period. Which directly constitutes to 70% of the total workforce of these industries. This is one of the most hefty and dominant setbacks that the govt. has to deal with. The travel sector accounts to 12.75% of the total nationwide employment- 5.56% of it direct and 7.79% indirect.

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A complete paralysis has hit travel and related sectors. Officials and workers have been reporting and stating continuously the drastic fall suffered before and after the lockdown. With international and state travel at complete halt during the lockdown, travel, hospitality sectors have somehow developed on the idea of drivable travelling to slowly and steadily start pulling out the companies from this atrociously dreaded situation.

After the announcement of UNLOCK1, states have laid down their own set of ground rules and protocols on travelling completely susceptible to the situation of corona in each state. Despite centre’s clear guidelines that no electronic pass is required for interstate travelling, states like Hyderabad , Kerela have decided to continue with the requirement of it.

With everything said, it is now our duty to act as responsible citizens and deal with the shortcomings rationally. Not being able to travel or commute is slowly but surely getting to us but it cannot be denied that things will get back to normal only when the curve is flattened.

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