Mexico's tourism reverses due to other countries' coronavirus restrictions

Mexico has already lost more than 11 million international travellers this year
Turismo México

FOTO/ARCHIVO  -   Mexico Tourism

Travel restrictions in some countries continue to negatively affect the inflow of international tourists to Mexico, a fact that has slowed the country's economic recovery since the arrival of the pandemic. According to data from Mexico's National Institute of Statistics and Geography (INEGI), Mexico recorded a reduction of more than 30% of foreign tourists, which is reflected in more than 4 billion dollars.

Despite this, there has been a recovery of tourism currencies to pre-pandemic levels, which has increased more than the number of international tourists, i.e. there are fewer foreign travellers, but with higher spending.

This past October has been the first month that has come closest to economic profitability in tourism since the pre-pandemic months, with a difference of 584,000 international tourists. The Mexican Ministry of Tourism claims that the country could end the year with good forecasts, with more than 31 million international tourists, 14 below the figure recorded in 2019. 

mexico turismo
PHOTO/FILE - Tourism Mexico

The country's new concern is the new variant of the omicron coronavirus. At the moment, 63 countries have already registered cases within their borders, including Mexico itself and the United States, something that is especially worrying for the latter country, which accounts for almost 76% of foreign tourists in Mexico.

So far, no restrictive measures have been taken in Mexico and during these months international tourism will depend on the sanitary measures of the countries of origin of the tourists. The fear that tourism may decline again has led the Mexican Ministry of Health to analyse the possibility of eliminating the questionnaires required to fly, considering it an ineffective measure that could affect the boarding process for international tourists

REUTERS/HENRY ROMERO - El presidente de México, Andrés Manuel López Obrador
REUTERS/HENRY ROMERO - The President of Mexico, Andrés Manuel López Obrador

These measures are due to the importance of tourism for Mexico, one of the ten most visited countries in the world. According to the head of the Ministry of Tourism, Miguel Torruco Marqués, the tourism Gross Domestic Product (GDP) will register 7.1% by the end of 2021 and 8.3% by the end of 2022, data that would practically imply the recovery of tourism activity to 2019 levels.

The Mexican government supports Torruco's words and the data related to tourism, as demonstrated by the initiative promoted by the Tianguis Turístico programme, held in recent weeks in Yucatán. Under the name of "The rebirth of tourism", the aim is to give the López Obrador government a position on the new tourism data in order to make decisions in the coming months. 

 Latin America Coordinator: José Antonio Sierra