Empty Hotels. Idled Tour Buses. The Pandemic Is Devastating Tourism.
MEXICO CITY — There were major hurricanes, and the global financial crisis of 2008. There was 9/11, and an array of regional health scares, from SARS to Zika.
But during the decades that he’s been involved in the tourism business in the Caribbean island nation of Sint Maarten, Emil Lee has never seen anything remotely like the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
“A switch got flipped,” said Mr. Lee, whose family manages a hotel on Sint Maarten, which shares a 34-square-mile island with the French territory Saint-Martin. “And now there’s no tourism.”
The global travel and tourism industry is in peril.