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COVID hospitality bulletin Asia Pacific - August 2022
Thursday, 4th August 2022
Source : AP Hospitality Advisors

Three months earlier than scheduled, New Zealand opened its border to all inbound travellers on Aug 1, after welcoming visitors from more than 60 countries visa-waiver countries since April this year.

New Zealand

Three months earlier than scheduled, New Zealand opened its border to all inbound travellers on Aug 1, after welcoming visitors from more than 60 countries visa-waiver countries since April this year. It is expected that the number of international students and leisure travellers is going to increase gradually, including cruise travellers.

The provisional data of overseas visitor arrivals recorded over 114,000 in the four weeks ended on 10th July, a 175% year-on-year increase and a 17% month-on-month increase. However, the recovery is expected to be slow as the average number of overseas visitors in June and July 2019 is 331,300, which is three times more than the current year.

While the return of travellers excites the hospitality and tourism industry in New Zealand, the labour shortage in the hotel and tourism sector becomes a concern for some operators.

Pre-COVID, New Zealand attracted a high number of young workforce in the service industry through working holidays and work visas every year, but it would take time for foreign workers to return due to the visa application. While the government and industry are preparing for the rebound, it is likely to be more challenging to reconnect with available talents at the same time.

Singapore

Singapore welcomed approximately 1.5 million travellers in the first half of 2022, and it is expected to reach 4 to 6 million by the end of the year despite the uncertainties. The Ministry of Transport also anticipated that air travel would rebound to at least 50% of the number of air passengers at pre-pandemic level in 2022.

The city state is going to host more international and regional events in the coming months, including the Singapore Grand Prix- Formula 1 in late September, Tour de France Singapore Criterium in October, and Bloomberg New Economy Forum in November. Notably, industry event HICAP will be held for the first time in Singapore this year.

Singapore has also seen a great increase in passenger movements at its Changi Airport since the reopening in April. In June, the monthly figure reached 2.9 million, which was 50.3% of its pre-COVID performance in 2019. In terms of hotel performance, RevPAR in June increased to SGD 183 in 2022, which is higher than the performance in the same month in 2019 at SGD 181 before adjustments.

Taiwan

As one of the few regions with mandatory quarantine on all inbound travellers, Taiwan is re-evaluating their timeline for reopening. The authorities further welcomed visitors for working holidays, internships and religious purposes in July.

Meanwhile, the quarantine was shortened to 7 days and the weekly quota for arrivals was increased to 40,000. As the latest data suggested, the number of monthly arrivals still hovered around 38,000 with 18% month-on-month growth in June.

To stimulate the domestic travel market, the Tourism Bureau announced a new round of subsidiary programs for spending on hotels, group travel, and attractions. The program covers a wide range of products for domestic travellers, including up to NTD 1,300 (USD 43) per hotel room during weekdays and 70% off on tickets for designated attractions.

Reopening status in Asia Pacific:

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