Pakistan Shuts Borders Amid Coronavirus Outbreak

Rizwan Saeed  / Unsplash

Pakistan has shuttered its land borders in an attempt to halt the spread of coronavirus. Rizwan Saeed / Unsplash

Skift Take: Pakistan — a budding tourism destination — has closed its land borders and limited international flights in an attempt to stop the spread of coronavirus. Pakistan borders both China and Iran, countries that have been hit hard by the virus.

— Danielle Hyams

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What You Need to Know About U.S. Airlines Now in a World Turned Upside-Down

Mirko  / Adobe

Empty plane cabins like the one shown here will be all too common for airlines as the coronavirus outbreak ramps up. Mirko / Adobe

Skift Take: U.S. airlines were in a position of strength. And then the coronavirus crisis struck. Although no carrier has announced layoffs or has requested a government bailout, the days, weeks, and months ahead look rough.

— Madhu Unnikrishnan

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Coronavirus Puts 50 Million Tourism Jobs at Risk: Report

Rahel Patrasso  / Reuters

People wear protective masks, amid coronavirus fears, at Guarulhos International Airport in Guarulhos, Sao Paulo state, BraziI March 12, 2020. Picture taken March 12, 2020. The global coronavirus outbreak means millions of travel and tourism jobs are at risk, says the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC). Rahel Patrasso / Reuters

Skift Take: The global coronavirus outbreak means millions of travel and tourism jobs are at risk, says the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC). Asia faces faces the most risk, with up to 30 million possible jobs affected, if demand dries up for two or three months.

— Sean O’Neill

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British Airways Prepares for Layoffs as Coronavirus Puts Airline Under ‘Immense Pressure’

Hannah McKay  / Reuters

Passengers wearing protective face masks disembark a British Airways aircraft at Terminal 5 in Heathrow Airport. The airline’s CEO has outlined its challenges. Hannah McKay / Reuters

Skift Take: Every airline is probably having to make the same tough decisions. The problem they all face is the high degree of uncertainty out in the world at the moment.

— Patrick Whyte

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Flight Centre Shutters 100 Stores in Australia as Coronavirus Roils Travel Sector

A Flight Centre shop in Cairns, Australia. The company announced that it would close 100 of its shops in Australia due to business impacts from the coronavirus.

Skift Take: Bushfires, drought and now coronavirus — can it get any worse for Australia tourism? Hopefully not, but signs are pointing to a darker picture ahead.

— Xinyi Liang-Pholsena

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Role Reversal Sees Asia Restricting Travel From Outside the Region

Ng Han Guan  / Associated Press

A man wearing a mask stands near a display board at the Capital International Airport terminal 3 in Beijing. As the number of new cases dwindles in China and multiplies abroad, the country once feared as the source of the COVID-19 outbreak is now worried about importing cases from abroad. Ng Han Guan / Associated Press

Skift Take: It looks like a game of whack-a-mole as governments around the world constantly rewrite travel bans and rules to keep up with the growing pandemic. The global travel ban list — and confusion — is only going to get greater.

— Xinyi Liang-Pholsena

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Travel Advisors Deal With Torrent of Spring Break Cancellations, Vacation Swaps

Exhale Spa

One travel advisor’s clients from New Rochelle, New York, figured it would be safer to travel to Turks and Caicos than to stay home, where one of the U.S.’ viral cluster outbreaks has formed. Pictured is an undated photo from Exhale Spa in Turks and Caicos. Exhale Spa

Skift Take: Spring break travel is in wait-and-see mode as travel advisors field calls from clients rattled by the coronavirus pandemic. Some travelers are swapping their trips for “safer” spots like Hawaii, Florida, and the Caribbean.

— Dennis Schaal

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