Bali, a famous Indonesian island for tourism, had high hopes to see more foreign arrivals in 2021 after it reopened its airport for international flights. However, none has arrived so far.
There have been 45 recorded arrivals to the island in 2021, and all came by boat. When the airport was again accepting international flights in October, there were two arrivals – on a boat.
Here’s an excerpt from JawaPos:
The Bali Provincial Tourism Office noted that in 2021, the number of foreign tourists who came to Bali was not empty, or zero. That is, there is “There were 45 foreign tourists visiting. These are from those who arrived at Benoa Harbor, Yatch Ships,” said Gunandika, as Head of Tourism Market Development from the Bali Provincial Tourism Office on Monday (12/13/2021).
He explained that the 45 foreign tourists came in January as many as 10 people, February 12 people, March 3 people, April 9 people, May 8 people, June 1 person, July – September no one came.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that there have been no international flights to the island. Who would vacation in a destination where you first need to quarantine for ten nights?
Previously, before the Omicron variant, you could enter through Jakarta, where you only needed to quarantine for two nights.
There is a discrepancy, whether there have been zero or two international arrivals through DPS in 2021. Nevertheless, the number is immaterial, considering that in 2019 and 2020, the island welcomed 6M+ international tourists each year.
Countries in South East Asia must be realizing that tourists won’t come unless the process is easy and flights exist.
Even Thailand that first had a sandbox experiment allowing vaccinated tourists to roam within an area freely, hasn’t seen the number of tourists they first expected. The most recent figures on the Test & Go are more promising but still lacking.
The situation in Bali, whose economy had heavily relied on international tourism, is dire. The island has welcomed plenty of domestic tourists, but those tend not to spend and consume services to the same level as international ones.
Let’s hope that 2022 is brighter for travel within Asia than 2020 and 2021.