COVID-19’s Impact on the Ski Industry

The lack of business at numerous ski resorts worldwide that have shut down amid the COVID-19 pandemic has given Oxford Ski time to look at how much the coronavirus may cause the ski industry and figure out what is being done to help.

An average year would see 38 percent (132 million people) of all skiing bookings after late February, generating over $189 billion of revenue for the ski industry and its suppliers, including airlines, transfer services and food and drink vendors. The closure of ski resorts around the world will cause the industry to see an estimated 38 percent loss of revenue as a result.

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“The COVID-19 virus is not something many would have expected coming into 2020,” Oxford Ski founder Rupert Longsdon said in a statement. “While we are doing everything we can to talk to resorts and other suppliers, we believe that as an industry we must come together and help consumers as best as we can, providing clear and concise information to those with bookings.”

Additionally, ski resorts along the Alps have lost an estimated $82 billion. It is predicted that that ski accommodation companies in the Alps will lose $35 billion in revenue.

Nevertheless, experts at Tourism Economics expect the entire travel industry to recover by 2023. Workers in the ski industry are hopeful that the industry will recover ever sooner, as bookings continue to come in for the 2020-21 winter season.

Much like airlines, the ski industry has requested both government and consumer help to stay afloat during the pandemic. In the UK, for example, the Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA) has asked for government aid to provide refunds for those who have booked a package. Meanwhile, travel companies are asking consumers to be patient and possibly speak with their travel companies to arrange credit for their bookings or change to an alternative date.

“We would advise all customers with bookings for the rest of this season to talk to their travel insurance, tour, accommodation and airline operators, to get up to date information and support as to the status of their bookings and policies on refunds, credit and alternative date,” said Longdon. “Those with bookings are advised to print, read and retain their insurance policies carefully.”

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