Mexico’s International Tourism Falls During MarchBy Sofía Hanna | Tue, 05/11/2021 - 19:49
Mexico received 17.4 percent less international tourists during March, explains a report by INEGI. The country welcomed only 2.3 million foreign travelers that month, in comparison to last year’s 2.8 million, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Tourism has suffered many changes and economic shocks after the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Mexico lost 5.1 percent of its foreign exchange earnings from tourism this March compared to the same month in 2020. Individually, each tourist spent less this year, from US$978 in March 2020 to US$689 this year, according to Forbes.
This is an alarming situation for the country given that tourism contributes 8.7 percent of Mexico’s GDP. According to Miguel Torruco, Minister of Tourism, the sector will not recover completely until 2023. Despite the decrease, in March 2021 Mexico received 43.9 percent more international tourists than the previous month. The president of the Mexican Federation of Tourist Associations (Fematur), Jorge Hernández, told El Economista, that "There has been a great advance in the US’s vaccination process (the main source of Mexico’s foreign tourists, which in March represented 79.4 percent out of all visitors), which is the engine that rekindles hope in the private sector.”
There are several strategies to support the recovery of Mexico’s tourist sector. Christopher Nassetta, Chairman of the Board of the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), informed that the organization will invest nearly US$2.5 billion in Mexican tourism projects over the next few years, which will generate over 100,000 jobs, as previously reported by MBN. These strategies are not merely monetary. Other strategies include promotion efforts to attract people foreigners and to entice Mexicans to travel within the country to reactivate the sector.
Domestic traveling is increasingly becoming a trend given the sanitary measures that governments have enforced worldwide, reports a previous MBN article. This is why there is a need to develop new tourist areas that will benefit from additional jobs and income. However, these regions must be willing to change adapt at any time because this is what it takes to push the industry forward.