Never in the history of mankind, Travelling has appeared so dangerous.
Terrorism and safety have been top apprehensions for travelers around the world, but who knew that a couple of bats in the Wuhan region may lead to thousands of people being infected and billions living in fear of travelling. As of March 4, more than 3,000 people have died around the globe from Coronavirus and infected cases have been reported in dozens of countries. There is a new case being detected each day and the media reportage has spread enough fear for everyone to cancel their overseas travel plans.
The travel industry is under a lot of stress as people are scared of moving out of their safe confines. Airline companies are losing business, countries have no tourists, sending couriers across the globe has become difficult, multinational companies are losing business and regular people are losing jobs. Some are saying there has not been a bigger issue in the travel industry since 9/11. Experts say that globally, the travel industry has come into a deficit of nearly $80 billion while the Indian companies continue to pile-up on loses.
Now, while COVID-19 or corona virus is deadly and has pushed a lot of people across different corners of the world to live in fear, it has asked us to look inward and be more responsible while travelling. Following are some of the points we can think over:
- Why travel international right now? Most of us are obsessed with travelling abroad. This is not the first time, we have the chances of carrying home this virus or some other flu which no one else might have a clue about. Not that traveling international is not a great experience, but what is the urgency?
- Do we have enough domestic destinations? It is no doubt that we have a plethora of destinations and almost everything in our country which can be compared to the Switzerlands and New Zealands of the world. What is stopping us from exploring our own countryside.
- When will we have enough infrastructure to travel smart in our own country? Forget the responsibility of the government, there is a lot that we can do to make a destination beautiful right from marketing it right to not over-crowding it. If there are roadblocks to creating better infrastructure, how can we ensure that right steps are taken to build what is required.
- Why do we spend more outside and crib when we have to pay extra for our own services? Famous cities the world over are charging visitor fees per day, the best of the international spots have absurd toll taxes, fees for everything. People do not crib while paying it abroad, why crib at home? It is the same money being used by those authorities to make things better. Remember each penny spent wisely or contributed wisely is lot of pennies earned, especially in travel.
- Are we explorers of hoarders? Do we travel to experience or just tick-mark being at the already famous spots? Are we doing it for our satisfaction or just to prove a point across social media? Our hills are collapsing as tourists are only hoarding the already suffocated spots and not opting for new experiences.
- How do we travel in current times? If you must travel overseas, you will have to be extra cautious and follow the rules laid out by the medical experts and chances are that you might come back unaffected. However, if one has to travel for leisure, it is suggested that one does try and avoid the foreign soil and the risks it brings along currently.
- Can we help save the travel industry? The airlines are piling up on their losses and most of the flights are being cancelled, the frequency of international flights is being halved. Cannot do much there, but there are many allied services that we can opt for while planning our holidays
- What next? We do not know about the next issue but we have already caused enough damage to our eco-system. Travelling is one of the major contributors to the overall carbon footprint, but those of us with means do not care about what we can save while we still have the option to exploit it. This is the only world we live in and we are leaving for our future generations, if there will be any after ours.
What are similar or other questions that are bothering you about travelling in current times, do share, let us talk about them and raise awareness.
Image Source: COVID-19 Global Cases by Johns Hopkins CSSE
About Author: Sumit is the MD of Escape Route, an experiential travel company, loves to explore off-beat places and share Escape stories with the world through Escape Route.
Follow him at www.instagram.com/jamwal_saaaab/ on instagram and Escape Route at https://www.instagram.com/escaperoute.co.in/. You can also watch Escape Route videos at https://www.youtube.com/c/escaperoutein