Even though it was one of the hardest hit by the pandemic, the global travel and tourism industry still managed to grow in 2021.
According to GlobalData, a total of 1,080 deals – including M&A, private equity and venture financing – were announced last year, a 1.3 per cent hike on 2020 levels.
“Deal activity in the travel and tourism sector consistently improved month-on-month during the latter half of 2021— though December suffered a setback that could be attributed to the rising number of Omicron cases. Nevertheless, there was a year-on-year improvement globally,” commented GlobalData’s lead analyst Aurojyoti Bose.
Key markets such as the US, Australia and France saw an improvement during 2021, while others such as the UK, Germany and Italy reported a Covid-induced slump.
The UK travel and tourism sector took a bad hit last year as foreign visitors kept their distance from the country, City A.M. reported.
According to the Tourism Alliance, 52 per cent of businesses suffered a fall in revenue over 50 per cent, while 55 per cent of them said in January they had less than two months of cash reserves.
“Businesses that rely on international travel have done badly – language schools, events, conferences. And because booking times for these things are longer, they will take longer to recover,” said the Tourism Alliance’s director Kurt Janson.”
Despite such a slump plaguing the UK, data suggests that globally 2022 will be the year the sector fully gets back on its feet.
The World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) revealed yesterday that industry’s contribution to the world economy could reach up to $8.6 trillion this year, following the easing of restrictions and global vaccination efforts.
“2022 is poised for a strong recovery if governments continue to open up and remove restrictions to travel. Our sector could recover more than 58 million jobs and generate $8.6 trillion which would boost economic recovery around the world,” said Julia Simpson, WTTC’s chief executive.