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Effects of Natural Disasters on Holiday Destinations

Effects of Natural Disasters on Holiday Destinations

Everyone loves to explore the countless magnificent views around the world be it natural or man-made. Whether it’s for leisure or in line with work, holiday destinations have more often than not left every adventurous soul in great awe and excitement, bringing back to their respective homes sweet memories of their voyage more than what is captured with every flick of the camera.

With that, we never discount the fact that not all holiday trips have turned out the way travellers want them to be. Fortuitous events like natural disasters have brought traumatic experiences not just to residents of places affected but to tourists as well. In most countries, many of the frequently-visited spots are considered as disaster-prone areas as well. But for these identified “risk-areas”, preventive and protective measures have already been made.

With the change of time, events have become unpredictable and so is the weather. Meteorological equipment may help agencies anticipate the coming of these natural disasters but the extent of the damage that these may cause is sometimes difficult to foresee. Even the most prepared countries and the richest nations on earth have been struck by natural disasters causing thousands of lives and properties. Recently, the United States have been struck by Hurricane Sandy causing floods to various states in the East Coast and Caribbean. A common scenario occurred – there was power black-out in many areas; public transport systems were shut down; restaurant and shops, and tourist attractions were closed. The tourism industry drastically dropped and travel businesses have lost millions of dollars as a result of the massive cancellation of business travels and hotel bookings. In connection with this, if not properly addressed, a crippled tourism industry can reduce other businesses’ income which can result to closure of business establishments thereby increasing unemployment rates in the areas affected. While clean-ups and repairs are immediately done right after the alert has been lifted, these natural disasters have left some questions to travellers – whether they would pursue their planned trip to the same holiday destination after the disaster; and if they do, will they be guaranteed safety? Would they still see and enjoy the same view of the places which they intend to visit and would those places be still worth visiting?

The negative impact on these holiday destinations affected may be temporary with the restoration and rehabilitation efforts made which includes the building of flood walls and intensifying the programs to minimize the impact if not fully prevent these natural disasters. And it would not be long until individuals would rebook their previously cancelled flights and tours to reach to their dream destinations and experience the grandeur and warmth that these places have to offer. On the positive side, natural disasters have become part of a place’s history converting the remnants into a favourite tourist hotspot.

Hurricane Sandy has taught not just residents and the government a lesson. It has reminded everyone to take part in showing respect for the environment for every step we make, a positive or negative reaction results – if not immediately, it will certainly arrive in the future.

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