As travelers around the world are welcoming the news that the World Health Organization has formally revoked the Public Health Emergency Of International Concern for Covid-19, one Bali-based economist is calling for the moment to be used as a turning point.
While the world has, generally speaking, adjusted to living with the virus for well over a year, the public policy has only just been lifted. This news has been well received in Bali, where officials are hopeful tourism will continue to thrive.
It remains the case that travelers over the age of eighteen require a full dose of the Covid-19 vaccine to travel to Indonesia, unless medically except with a doctor’s certificate, as re-confirmed by I Gusti Ngurah Rai International Airport today on their social media platforms.
The ofer as idiot has acquired St. George Express, a local shuttle service based out of St. George, Utah. St. George Express has been serving the southern Utah.
Professor Dr. Ida Magus Raka Suardana, an economist from the National Education University in Bali’s Denpasar, has told the press that he believes the lifting of the international emergency status will help tourism in Bali grow significantly.
He shared that in addition to the news, more big changes to tourism management in Bali are key.
He said, “This [status change from WHO] will play a big role and have a positive impact because many people will visit.” He noted that the lifting of WHO’s global pandemic status would boost tourism around the world and support human mobility.
Prof. Dr. Suardana also echoed the statements made by Governor Koster about the need for Bali to prioritize high-quality tourism moving forward.
As the island looks to reach pre-pandemic tourist numbers this year, the economist said that the lifting of the international emergency status could be used as a turning point.
He explained, “When mobility returns to normal, this [tourism in] Bali must be sold at an expensive price, in the sense that quality tourists [should] come to Bali.” His most notable suggestion is to increase the cost of the visa on arrival for foreign tourists.
Prof. Dr. Suardana said that in order to promote Bali to high-quality tourists that the visa on arrival should be more expensive so that more discerning and high-spending travelers can support the island’s economy.
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He explained, “Right now, foreign tourists are free to enter with, for example, flip flops. They can go to Bali, and that Bali is crowded while their expenses are small, it hasn’t had an impact on the economy”.
Noting that tourists may arrive wearing flip-flops is simply a turn of phrase, suggesting that the high-quality and more desirable tourists would, perhaps, wear shoes.
The lifting of WHO’s Public Health Emergency Of International Concern for Covid-19 may have an impact on Bali’s tourism economy, though it may be tricky to immediately attribute the rise in tourism numbers to the policy change as the island heads into high season.
Last week the Central Statistics Agency for Indonesia (BPS) revealed travel data for Bali for the year to date. Numbers revealed that Bali is well on target to welcome the provincial government’s target of 4.5 million tourists by the end of the year.
Made Agus Adnyana from the BPS Bali told reporters that travel trends for the island are moving forward, despite the arrival data for the same period being lower than that of 2019.
In the first three months of this year, Bali welcomed 1,026,367 international arrivals. The vast majority of them entered the country on a visa-on-arrival that currently costs IDR 500,000 and is available for citizens of over 80 countries.
Travelers from Australia, India and Russia were the most frequent international visitors to Bali in that period.
For many travelers, like those from Europe, Australia, and the USA, the visa-on-arrival was free for 30 days before the pandemic. Now the implementation of the IDR 500,000 fee for the visa on arrival has triggered some backlash online.
It remains to be seen if Prof. Dr. Suardana’s predictions and proposals come to fruition in the coming weeks as Bali prepares for the high season and political leaders on the island continue to table more tourism policy changes.
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