No. 103 Domestic Tourism (11/2020)

Issue Number
Strand_Radfahrer_Fischerboote_Inlandstourismus_Gemeindebasierter Tourismus
© Karlie Cummins

Even if it does not seem so in November 2020, domestic tourism is generally more resistant to shocks and crises and recovers from them faster than international tourism.

No wonder that more and more countries – also in the Global South - are currently launching new advertising campaigns and discount deals for their own population or offer more options for extended weekends by combining holidays. Most successful are those countries that already had internationally travelling upper classes before the crisis. Our articles from Thailand and the Indonesia show potentials, but also limitations of these strategies.

In a world of increasing crises, be it the climate crisis, political tensions or pandemics, the focus on domestic tourism should not remain a short-term emergency solution, but become an integral part of all tourism strategies. Its sustainability balance is usually much better than that of international travel: In general, domestic travelers consume more local products, have shorter travel distances and use therefore fewer resources. Although domestic travelers, particularly in developing countries, usually spend less money than international guests do, their spending has a broader economic impact at the local level. The expenses do not only last in the hotels, but also go to a broader range of smaller shops and restaurants. Our article from Uganda highlights these positive potentials particularly for women. As our article from Brazil shows, domestic tourism also carries risks for local communities. Exploitation and over-tourism are consequences if domestic tourism is not well prepared.

2020 was and is the most difficult year in a long time for everyone who lives from tourism: entrepreneurs*, employees, but also countless people in the informal economies. Whether it is a lost year for tourism itself remains to be seen. We share with our authors the hope – and the expectation - that tourism after Corona will be more sustainable, healthier and more resilient than before.

In this spirit, we wish you a contemplative Advent season – please have a look at our suggestions for digital journeys from early summer as a glimmer of hope for a better year 2021.

Domestic Tourism

Uganda: A game changer for women

Woman looking through Telescope_Uganda
© Slim Emcee_Unsplash

Due to COVID-19, domestic tourism is moving into focus in many countries - also in Uganda. This strengthens women in the industry and promotes female empowerment.

Brazil: Not Yet an Option

Community Based Tourism_CBT_Brasilien_Gemeindebasierter Tourismus
© Araribà Turismo e Cultura

Disrespectful behaviour, waste and noise pollution, lack of interest, and now COVID-19. In Brazil the risks that domestic tourism entails for traditional communities seem bigger than the opportunities.

Short information, literature and material

Video documentation on precariousness of work

With contributions from Brazil, the Gambia, Spain and the Philippines, the online seminar of the Transforming Tourism Initiative discussed the effects of the Covid19 pandemic on working conditions in tourism.


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