The countries set to be hardest hit by Covid-19's impact on tourism

Hotel occupancy rates in Paris are down 86% compared to last year. CNN's Melissa Bell explains the severe impact Covid-19 has had on tourism in the city.

Posted: Aug 3, 2020 6:31 AM

While popular destinations are slowly reopening and tourism is beginning to pick up in some spots, the impact of the pandemic on the industry has been nothing short of devastating.

Many countries that heavily rely on the revenue from tourism lost one of their main sources of wealth almost overnight back in March, but which are likely to be the hardest hit?

According to Statista, Mexico is the most vulnerable of the world's largest economies, as 15.5% of its GDP relies on the travel and tourism industry.

The online portal, which provides data on the global digital economy, has compiled a list of those likely to be worst affected based on 2019 figures from the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC).

Mexico features at the top of Statista's list, closely followed by Spain and Italy.

Already among the countries with the highest coronavirus death tolls, the European destinations are also likely to be among the most affected by declining tourism due to their dependence on revenue from visitors, which contributed 14.3% to Spain's GDP last year and 13% to that of Italy's, according to WTTC.

After issuing one of the strictest lockdowns in Europe -- at one point adults were only allowed to leave their home to buy food, medicine or take their dog for a walk -- Spain has been keen to revive its struggling tourism industry, reopening its borders in the past month to all EU countries and approved third-party countries.

Tourism reliance

Meanwhile, Italy reopened to travelers from the EU, along with the UK and the microstates and principalities of Andorra, Monaco, San Marino and the Vatican, in a move the government described as a "calculated risk."

However, coronavirus cases here have risen significantly in Spain since restrictions were lifted, with some sections being issued with a second lockdown.

Italy has also experienced a slight rise in cases since easing restrictions, indicating the recovery process is likely to be slow with potential stops and starts.

The impact on the US, the world's largest economy, has been less significant, with tourism only accounting for 8.6% of its GDP, which is based on various contributions, including revenue from hotels, travel agents, airlines and restaurants.

However, WTTC indicates the total contribution from travel and tourism accounts for around 16.8 million jobs.

The US has the world's highest Covid-19 death rate, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

France sits just below the US on the list, with tourism making up 8.5% of its GDP in 2019, followed by Brazil at 7.7%.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, declining tourism is likely to have few financial ramifications for South Korea, with the tourism sector only accounting for 4.2% of its GDP last year.

While top destinations have been pulling out all the stops to tempt travelers back, it seems it's going to take time for the industry to rebound, and experts have suggested things may never return to the way they were previously -- it took almost three years for the airline industry to rebound from the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001.

"I'm not sure it [the travel sector] will ever be identical to the way it was [pre-Covid 19]," says Lori Pennington-Gray, professor and director of the Tourism Crisis Management Initiative at the University of Florida, told CNN Travel earlier this month.

"As far as operating at full capacities and with the same volumes, it may take years to get to that. But we know from previous crises that the travel industry is very resilient."

"The travel industry will rebound, it just isn't going to happen tomorrow."

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 307519

Reported Deaths: 7096
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto20772248
Hinds19888408
Harrison17489302
Rankin13311275
Jackson13097243
Madison9895210
Lee9856169
Jones8290160
Forrest7523146
Lauderdale7187237
Lowndes6262144
Lamar610584
Lafayette6027117
Washington5280132
Bolivar4769129
Oktibbeha455297
Panola4442103
Pearl River4419139
Warren4280118
Marshall4273100
Pontotoc416472
Monroe4057132
Union403675
Neshoba3987176
Lincoln3869108
Hancock372085
Leflore3468124
Sunflower329389
Tate322681
Pike3180104
Scott310572
Yazoo304368
Alcorn297764
Itawamba296776
Copiah292965
Coahoma289677
Simpson287484
Tippah284668
Prentiss275659
Marion265779
Wayne261341
Leake261073
Grenada254982
Covington254580
Adams245882
Newton244859
George237847
Winston225981
Tishomingo222067
Jasper219748
Attala213273
Chickasaw204857
Holmes186471
Clay182454
Stone179131
Clarke176876
Tallahatchie175240
Calhoun163230
Yalobusha158836
Smith158534
Walthall130543
Greene129433
Lawrence126223
Noxubee125933
Montgomery125542
Perry125138
Carroll120826
Amite120041
Webster113432
Jefferson Davis105432
Tunica102525
Claiborne101330
Benton97225
Kemper95226
Humphreys94332
Franklin81823
Quitman78916
Choctaw72817
Jefferson64828
Wilkinson64727
Sharkey49617
Issaquena1686
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 518899

Reported Deaths: 10712
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson753641487
Mobile37763798
Madison33859494
Tuscaloosa25266443
Montgomery23962565
Shelby23106238
Baldwin20631300
Lee15524165
Calhoun14284311
Morgan14139268
Etowah13662345
Marshall11957219
Houston10380278
Elmore9993200
Limestone9811147
Cullman9470188
St. Clair9426234
Lauderdale9215227
DeKalb8746181
Talladega8058171
Walker7087275
Jackson6754110
Autauga6723103
Blount6483135
Colbert6203130
Coffee5399112
Dale4767110
Russell428838
Franklin419982
Chilton4083109
Covington4053114
Tallapoosa3893146
Escambia387674
Dallas3527149
Chambers3499122
Clarke346360
Marion3065100
Pike305875
Lawrence295395
Winston272372
Bibb256258
Marengo248661
Geneva245875
Pickens232959
Barbour224755
Hale218775
Butler212266
Fayette208960
Henry187844
Cherokee182044
Randolph176941
Monroe171440
Washington164038
Macon154548
Clay149354
Crenshaw149257
Cleburne146041
Lamar139234
Lowndes136453
Wilcox124327
Bullock121340
Conecuh109028
Perry107926
Sumter102932
Coosa99228
Greene90734
Choctaw58724
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A cold front will move into our area during our Tuesday. This front will bring some chances for some rain and isolated thunderstorms for our Tuesday night. Some of the activity will linger in our area into our Wednesday.
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