Are the next B & Bs in line? After the aviation and tourism industry breathed a sigh of relief with the announcement of the lifting of the ban on flying from Friday, October 16, it is now hoped that the rural tourism industry and the entire hotel industry will allow them to open as early as November. The new Minister of Tourism, Orit Farkash HaCohen, is expected to demand the opening of B & Bs at the Corona Cabinet meeting. On behalf of the Minister, it was reported that she met with tourism professionals and public health experts, and prepared an outline for the opening of the B & Bs.
“Leaving the accommodation industry closed while Ben Gurion Airport is opened is not a sensible decision, based on zero infection data in B & Bs. “To promote the opening of the industry, and start allowing anyone who can return and earn a living. The B & Bs, most of which are in the countryside, will also help mental health and allow guests to enjoy nature, after months of closure,” the minister said.
In the outline presented by the Deputy Minister of Health, MK Yoav Kish, he also immediately proposes the city of Eilat. In a discussion held in the Knesset’s tourism lobby, the issue of increasing aid to the tourism industry and hotels in particular, which were severely affected by the crisis, was encouraged. However, the tourism industry hopes to advance another significant step by opening Israel’s borders to tourists, borders that have been closed since March. The Chamber of Inbound Tourism Organizers has approached the tourism lobby with a gradual outline for tourists entering Israel.
The bureau’s director general, Yossi Fattal, hopes to receive a green light so that “at the beginning of 2021, tourists will come here to save Tiberias, Acre, Nazareth, Jerusalem, Safed and more.” According to the outline, tourists from green countries will be allowed in the first phase. Dead Sea and Eilat – In this case, it is possible to generate traffic from Europe to Ramon Airport and offer packages that focus on these green areas.The next step is to consider providing incentives for bringing groups of tourists to Israel (e.g. subsidizing transportation, site entry, training, etc.), along with budgets that ensure their health Of tourists and providing a solution in case of illness.Finally hope to bring about change and lead to the recognition of the inbound tourism industry as a national resource, as exists in many countries in the world.The recognition will lead to the allocation of budgets accordingly.
Since March, as stated, tourists have not entered Israel, except for holders of foreign citizenship with a special permit (medical tourism, family events, etc.). According to the Ministry of Tourism, the cumulative loss of revenue to the economy since the beginning of the year is about NIS 12.1 billion. As expected, in September the number of tourists entering Israel continued to fall, with 15.1 thousand entries to Israel. This is a decrease of about 96% compared to September last year. The cumulative number of tourist arrivals (January-September) this year was 783,000 compared to about 3.3 million arrivals in the corresponding period last year.
Meanwhile, El Al has announced that it will resume flights to other destinations, after it began flying to Greece in early October, and last week the company also resumed flights to New York. Next week (18.10) EL AL will operate flights to Frankfurt, and from 19.10 it will operate flights to Amsterdam. The following week, from October 25, flights will be operated to Los Angeles and Miami and then to Sofia and Kiev.
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