Improvements and Adjustments Needed to Overcome the Impact of COVID-19 by the Travel and Tourism Services Sector in Sri Lanka

  • RPDM Rajarathne ,Faculty of Graduate Studies, University of Colombo, Sri Lanka (dila920720@gmail.com)

Since the end of the civil war, Sri Lankan Travel and Tourism sector has rapidly developed until its name has been popularized as a top travel destination in the world. Resulting this global popularity, travel and tourism sector has become the third largest export earner of Sri Lanka while supporting more than 10 percent of the total economy in 2019. Nevertheless, travel and tourism sector in Sri Lanka is severely damaged as a result of the Easter bomb attack and the Covid-19 pandemic. The severe downfall occurred in travel and tourism globally has heavily impacted tourism industry in Sri Lanka. As the COVID-19 pandemic is still uncontrolled, the impact over tourism industry could not be measured or predicted. Hence, it is crucial to take steps to overcome the situation by identifying and suggesting solutions for the already existing issues and regulatory loopholes in travel and tourism sector and introducing new methods of conducting business adjusting to the new normal. This qualitative research work, especially with an inductive analysis tries to address the contemporary issues faced by the Sri Lankan tourism industry due to COVID-19 pandemic. The main objective of this study is to identify the impact on the tourism industry due to COVID-19 and to discusses what measures Sri Lanka can take to overcome those challenges, especially referring to travel and tourism services sector.

Key Words: Tourism and travel-related services, Covid-19, new normal, impact on the industry, recovery measures.

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