The French Government is set to unveil a plan to restart and save the nation’s tourism sector by inciting domestic tourism as international borders are to remain closed until further notice.
France was the #1 tourist destination in 2019 with almost 19 million foreign visitors. The tourism sector accounts for 7.2% of the nation's GDP and 2 million jobs.
With the major low where France has suffered the most loss in volume of tourists in Europe due to the pandemic, the government has earmarked 1.5 billion euro to revive the sector badly hit by the coronavirus pandemic in a newly designed plan.
This ‘Marshall Plan’ as the government has tagged it is hinged on 4 major pillars including beefed-up public safety measures, hygiene measures, assisting small businesses to cope with new realities, as well as make a new investment.
A major highlight of the Marshall Plan is issuing more travel vouchers to be used at restaurants, hotels, and tourist sites within the country. These vouchers are often subsidized by employers as part of their staff welfare program.
This voucher is beneficial for users who will get to spend less at these locations. It is also a way to guarantee that money is spent in the domestic tourism sector
With the summer holiday season fast approaching, the focus is being redirected to domestic tourism. As tourists in France have canceled all their international tourist plans, local tourist destinations and scenic sites are trying to spend their holiday on the home turf.
Currently, people are not permitted to travel more than 100 kilometers from their homes but there are hopes that the restriction will be lifted soon.
According to the international Air travels Agency (IATA) passenger demands may not recover till 2024.
Restaurants and cafes are also yet to reopen in France, and large department stores in Paris which rely mostly on foreign tourists are expected to be shut until 10th July at the earliest.