Italy’s COVID-19 concerns are lessening as the nation prepares to restart tourism flows

General sentiment regarding the impact of COVID-19 in Italy is gradually becoming more positive. In two surveys by GlobalData, one conducted 28 April and the other 3 May, the number of Italians stating that they are ‘extremely concerned’ about the virus dropped by 14%. However, this positive outlook may change as Italy plans to open its borders for international tourists says GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

Ralph Hollister, Travel & Tourism Analyst at GlobalData, comments: “Italy is currently planning that inbound visitors won’t have to go into quarantine once it opens its borders. Just as Italians were beginning to become less concerned about the outbreak of COVID-19, this announcement could re-ignite apprehension around a second spike in its national infection rate. Re-allowing inbound tourism flows from other European countries undeniably increases the chance of infections rates rising once again.

“These plans may be nerve-racking for Italian citizens, but will be gladly received by Italian businesses that have ties to the tourism sector. Tourism-related businesses have already lost out on some of its most valuable months. One of the most valuable aspects of tourism for the nation is the inbound and domestic flow of tourists motivated by cultural trips to cities.”

Cultural trips are mostly undertaken from March to May, and then in September to October. GlobalData notes that from March to April in 2019, domestic and outbound trips in Italy jumped by 4.5 million.

Hollister continues: “The sooner borders are opened the better for local businesses. Many will need to start trading as quickly as possible in order to stay afloat. It is evident that the Italian Government is stuck between a rock and a hard place. The nation’s economy cannot continue on its path of rapid decline. Restarting its tourism sector is seen as a key place to begin in order to re-stimulate economic growth.”

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