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For many of the world’s most popular destinations, summer is the season when tourism peaks and travelers are most inclined to spend both vacation days and saved income on their getaways. With fears over the spread of COVID-19 and strict travel restrictions imposed by countries to help curb new infections, many travel plans have since been postponed or canceled entirely.
According to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, the coronavirus pandemic has dramatically disrupted the world’s tourism sector with an estimated loss of $1.2 trillion, or 1.5% of the world’s GDP. With air travel down more than 70% from 2019 and many would-be travelers opting instead for “staycations,” UNCTAD estimates that some tourist enterprises may never recover from the economic effects of this pandemic.
For recently reopened destinations like the Walt Disney World Resort near Orlando, a current hot spot for coronavirus infections in the US, there are fears that opening too soon will cause an uptick in new COVID-19 infections. Still, many countries are slowly returning to a new normal following weeks of lockdowns and have since implemented safety measures at popular tourist sites to help keep visitors safe.
These pictures show what summer tourism looks like around the world amid the coronavirus pandemic.