Myanmar Plans to Reopen to Asian Travellers in October

Myanmar, like many other countries, has shut down it’s the tourism industry since the emergence of the Covid-19 and is now planning to relaunch the industry for foreigners by allowing travelers from ASEAN and Asia in the fourth quarter this year, according to the Vice President U Henry Van Thio, who chairs National Committee for Tourism Department.

The country also plans to set up ‘travel bridge’ to countries such as Laos and Cambodia, to which Myanmar doesn’t have direct flights and establish a ‘travel bubble’ with Thailand And Vietnam, to which Myanmar has direct flights.

Moreover, the country eyes to expand its tourism with countries such as Japan, Hong Kong, Macao, and Korea, who can now control the virus.

The vice president said that travelers in new normal in post-Covid-19 times will prefer natural tourism, ethnic tourism, and environmental tourism than crowded city life, and therefore Myanmar’s need to create a new form of tourism.

In the 2018-2019 fiscal year, foreign travelers spent over $2 billion in Myanmar, where tourism directly or indirectly created 300,000 jobs for local people. In January, Myanmar received 183,416 foreign travelers entering the country through air travel in January this year and the number slumped to 82. The first three months of 2020 saw a 22 percent drop in the number of foreign travelers.

Myanmar has developed the Tourism Strategic Road Map containing three phases: surviving, reopening, and relaunching with the plan to resume the industry with domestic tourism.

Written by Tayzar Bhone Myint/ Translated by Min Thu Aung