Adrian Loveridge Column – Need to Share COVID 19 Cost

For decades, this week has traditionally marked the start of the critical winter season where visitor arrivals and occupancy soar and when many of our hotels and tourism enterprises achieve their most lucrative rates, which during normal times, significantly contributes to absorbing operational costs during the longer softer summer season.

While the introduction of a Covid-19 vaccine has offered hope for a return to some normality in months to come, it will clearly be some time until visitor numbers return to anything like we have almost taken for granted in years past.

Consolidation of flights from major markets continue with the ongoing disruption this causes to the traveller, hotels and other accommodation options. I would imagine now that our tourism policymakers are now looking very carefully at the demographic make-up of what might become the ‘typical visitor’ to our shores over the next few months, so they can best target any promotional and marketing efforts into appealing to those most likely to travel.

There is a real danger that price may be deemed as the greatest incentive to drive arrival numbers and for many in the tourism sector that could seem the easiest option, if only just to create some vitally needed cash flow and attempt to pay the mounting bills and financial obligations.

This approach seems to have been adopted by the cruise sector, whose major players are currently offering rates as low at US$28 per person per day for sailings set to resume from US ports as early as 1st August 2021.
This, while tens of thousands of would be passengers are still awaiting refunds for cancelled cruises over the last eight months.

Ultimately, we all know it will be the taxpayer that picks up the ‘national’ cost of the pandemic. But in the interim, is there anything more that Governments’ can do to speed recovery?

I believe the answer to that is a definite YES!

Despite all the various lobbying, at the least from what has been our largest single market, the United Kingdom, over half the cost of flying on the lowest cost return economy ticket from Gatwick, Heathrow or Manchester is taken up in taxes. First the APD (Air Passenger Duty) amounting to a minimum of GB Pounds 80 rising to a staggering GB Pounds 528 per person for business and first class fares. It is estimated that APD contributed over GB Pounds 3.7 billion to the British Treasury last year.

Secondly, the two departure taxes ‘we’ impose of at least BDS$195 per person for all flights. With the single exception of those wholly within CariCom, that are BDS$70 less.

Government has to decide if it just the private sector who are expected to absorb the significant losses to the entire tourism industry during 2020 and beyond. Or are they going to share that enormous burden to help speed recovery?

133 thoughts on “Adrian Loveridge Column – Need to Share COVID 19 Cost

  1. @ Carson

    It is medical racism. They put an economic value on life. Remember , all the CoVid Big Pharma have exemptions from legal action if things go wrong.
    The Americans, Canadians and Europeans al put a value on life. Of course, the Yanks value life betweenUS$1m and $10. The Canadians are about Can$2m and the Europeans under US$1m. Look at the policies, the lives versus livelihood arguments, when they put the economy ahead of saving lives.
    Check out the prices courts award for industrial injuries and death.

  2. This is so wrong, considering the lives of people who live in rich countries as more important than people in poorer countries.

    Yet they want to flock to the Caribbean countries and infect every one. With the help of local Hotel owners. All in the name of the almighty dollar. Putting the economy first, not Human lives.

  3. See how dangerous some of these people are??? But we in Barbados believe they are Angels come down from Heaven. Some of these people are wicked as Hell. Only in Barbados can they boast that they don’t have any people in Jail.

  4. Not enough being done to reboot tourism, says Sealy
    Former Minister of Tourism Richard Sealy is a fan of the 12-month Welcome Stamp initiative, but is concerned that not enough is being done by Government to reboot the sector to properly rebound from the COVID-19 pandemic.
    At a Democratic Labour Party (DLP) lunchtime lecture yesterday at the DLP’s George Street, Belleville, St Michael headquarters, Sealy said he had grave concerns why, at a time when Barbados needed to be marketed and advertised in a particular way to deal with challenges associated with the pandemic, a permanent leader was yet to be named to head the Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc. (BTMI).
    Former chief of the BTMI, William “Billy” Griffith, resigned to go into the private sector in October last year, and Government, having appointed people to lead BTMI on an interim basis, is yet to name someone to permanently head the organisation.
    “I think now that you basically have little or no tourism in Barbados, this is the time the greatest level of intellectual rigour ever brought to tourism planning should be expended,” Sealy said. He cited The Bahamas and Cayman Islands as Caribbean nations that were well under way to rebooting their overall product.
    Sealy said while Barbados had done well to avoid community spread and reopen the business sector, it was quite likely there could even be a second outbreak of COVID-19 which affected the island, and Government should be looking at the ways and means of making the industry more robust to face similar challenges.
    He noted that high-end traffic was coming back with high net worth individuals easily in a position to come to Barbados, but Government must look at the elements which worked well in the past, and improve upon them to attract a tourist who made significantly less than the millionaires and billionaires who come every year.
    Regarding the Welcome Stamp, Sealy said it was nice, convenient and well packaged.
    “But it’s not going to save the tourism industry. Who’s going to be able to afford to stay in hotel rooms in Barbados for six months? You still have to go back to the element that is attracted to Barbados.” (BA)

    Source: Nation

  5. Shut down tourism.
    Let those with the resilience and brain power to operate hotels do so.
    Let those masquerading as business people with not even a modicum of intelligence fail!
    Stop allowing these people to rape, pillage and steal from our country as they like while the masses employed by them continue to suffer
    Engage in and enforce compliance mechanisms like Forensic Audits against hotels across the board
    Jail those who mis-use tax incentives and concessions.
    Stop taking campaign finance funding from them to try to purchase OUR votes !
    Do not fund another “white” parasite with hard earned Bajan dollars
    Stop talking and ACT!
    Stop or else!

  6. Most noticeable Barbados murder rate has surpassed COVID deaths
    I wonder why?


    When was the covid deaths ever infront? Or don’t you know the meaning to “surpass”

  7. I agree.
    An opportunity to praise those who are managing our Covid-19 policy, turned into an idiotic, inane, insane and ignorant political comment.

    Mariposa, don’t hold your ground, an apology is in order.

  8. Sealy is confident that tourism will bounce back after some time. This is a more realistic assumption than outright death.
    _—–++Have a Great Day—

  9. That is like saying I am confident the sun will come out after the rain. Question is how long will the rain fall before the sun comes out and will the land be totally flooded when the sun finally shines?

    It amazes me what make news today.

  10. @ John A

    Have you noticed that some people cannot talk about anything but tourism, no matter the party they represent. After 60 years of ‘free’ education this is what we have come to.

  11. @ Hal

    It’s all part of the what all parties have been doing for years. If you remember going back 20 years we used to be told in June of the current year that the following tourism season ” looked good.” Then of course as the season came and went we would find some reason for why it fell short. Either spend was down but arrivals were up bla bla bla.

    Have you heard any serious conversation yet about how we will restructure the local economy post covid? Have you heard yet how we will reposition the tourism product post covid with pricing and packaging?

    No none of this just alot of statements void of facts and details. From the hoteliers what have you heard? Oh yes we need help from the state. My point is I see a lack of pro active thinking up to now and covid is 9 months old.

  12. @ John A

    I have. The magic is called tourism, or as the president now calls it, Barbadians by choice. The woman has turned being a used car salesperson in to an art, which has ordinary people mesmerised. It is really sad.
    Now we are told that CoVid vaccinations will arrive in Barbados in March, and we may get some from Russia, China and India. Why do we allow this gang of reprobates to destroy this country?

  13. @ John A

    It is all trickery. Who in Barbados has spoken to a Russian medical official? What do they know about the Russian trials?

  14. It seems no one dies of the seasonal flu anymore. The unnecessary deceitful hysteria will further create distrust in the fight against COVID-19 #Covid19Fatigue will soon set in. Lockdowns it have shown don’t work only strict adherence to social distancing, hand washing, proper mask wearing and other protocols to break the chain of virus contact. Unfortunately, the stubbornness of some citizens in some countries make it difficult to break the chain of the spreading virus.

  15. The PM of Britian said that he knew of the countries where this new strain came from
    However he refused to name the countries
    One can bet that this on going travel where not all protocols are diligently done at airports would continue to be major problem of spreading the virus from country to country
    Read that a man boarded a flight became ill during the flight and died
    The cause of his illness was Corona

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