World Travel: Could climate change knock tourism for six?

And political upheaval can't be doing the travel industry much good, either.

As Thos. Cook shares in the UK plunge 75% on news that it is experiencing extraordinarily challenging trading conditions due to floods in Thailand and political unrest in Tunisia and Egypt, perhaps other firms will make similar statements. 

Severe weather patterns are predicted to hit us at will more frequently. And tourist resort destinations are at risk, South East Asia and the Caribbean being two obvious examples.

Airlines, travel firms, tour operators, hoteliers and casino operators will surely be affected. The travel industry may become an increasingly precarious place as global warming accelerates.

As the Arab protests spread, so travel to those countries would be affected (although few venture to Syria, Iran, Yemen or Saudi Arabia in any event). But with Asian economies now predicted by the World Bank to be slowing down on the back of weak demand from debt-laden developed countries, another damaging recession of significant proportions looms. 

Occupy protestors might have been silenced pro-tem, but will they return in greater numbers as austerity and harsh recession bite?  Venturing into political mayhem is never an attractive option for tourists. And we only have to remember how holidaymakers recoiled at the prospect of landing in London after recent riots to appreciate how quickly events can change travel plans.

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1 comment:

  1. Yes, climate change will have a significant impact, until it becomes the new normal (assuming a gradual increase in adverse weather events, at worst).

    Oil depletion will be the real deal though. There is no feasible large-scale alternative ready in the wings. Air travel is an endangered species of economic activity. Bad news for distant NZ...