Direct Economic Costs of COVID-19 on Tourism

07 December 2020

IPS Research Economist Kanchana Wickramasinghe examines the forgone direct economic benefits via tourism due to COVID-19 as part of her PhD research. The study develops forecasting models to estimate international tourist arrivals and international tourist guest nights in Sri Lanka for the first quarter of 2020. The analysis reveals that Google search data, when combined with past tourist arrivals data helps to increase the accuracy of tourism demand forecasting for Sri Lanka.

Interestingly, the models help understand the tourism demand trends in the initial part of 2020 following the Easter Sunday attacks in 2019.  The study provides a more accurate picture of potential monthly tourism demand from different parts of the world. The estimates are then compared with the actual official tourist arrivals data to illustrate the forgone tourism demand and resultant economic losses.

The full article is available at Current Issues in Tourism Journal

Citation: Kanchana Wickramasinghe & Shyama Ratnasiri (2020) The role of disaggregated search data in improving tourism forecasts: Evidence from Sri Lanka, Current Issues in Tourism,  DOI: 10.1080/13683500.2020.1849049