According to the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC), €48 billion looks set to be lost from the French economy due to the collapse of international travel during 2020.
WTTC says the decline in the number of international travelers and tourists visiting France due to the COVID-19 pandemic, could result in international visitor spending dropping by 82%.
This loss to the French economy equates to a shortfall of €131.2 million a day, or €918 million a week.
This news comes after the UK removed France from its quarantine free list, with British holidaymakers returning from France now needing to quarantine for 14 days when arriving back to the UK.
This measure will have a massive economic impact on both French and the UK economies, with WTTC predicting the UK is set to lose £22 billion due to the collapse of international travel this year.
More than two million jobs (2.1m) in France supported by Travel & Tourism are at risk of being lost in a ‘worst case’ scenario mapped out by WTTC economic modelling.
Across Europe, in the ‘worst case’ scenario, that figure rises to more than 29m (29.5m) Travel & Tourism jobs.
This comes as France recently announced considering imposing quarantine to UK travelers which would have a bigger impact in both economies.
According to WTTC’s 2020 Economic Impact Report, during 2019, Travel & Tourism was responsible for 2.7m million jobs, or 9.4% of the country’s total workforce. It also generated more than €205 billion GDP, or 8.5% to the French economy.
WTTC and its Members recently called upon President Emmanuel Macron and the other leaders of the G7 countries, urging for a coordinated approach be taken in leading the recovery response to the crisis.
Gloria Guevara, WTTC President & CEO, said: “The lack of international travel could threaten the position of Paris as one of the world’s premier hubs for business and leisure travel. International coordination to re-establish transatlantic travel would provide a vital boost to the Travel & Tourism sector. We need to replace the ever-changing quarantine measures with rapid, comprehensive and cost-effective test and trace programs at departure points across the country. This investment will be less than the impact of blunt quarantines which have devastating socio-economic consequences.”
WTTC analysis of international travel spending in France during 2019 reveals it reached €58.6 billion, accounting for 34% of the total tourism spend in Germany. Domestic travel spending was last year responsible for the other 66%.
A further breakdown reveals how crucial spending from international travelers during 2019 was to the French economy. Every month it accounted for €4.9 billion or €1.1 billion a week – and €160 million a day.
Between 2016 and 2018, the largest inbound source markets to France were travelers from Germany and the UK, each accounting for 14% of all international arrivals, with Belgium coming in third with 12%, and Italy and Switzerland in joint fourth place with 8% each.
Data for 2018 shows how dependent Paris in particular is on international visitor spending. It accounted for almost three quarters (74%) of all tourism spending in the city, with domestic tourists making up the remaining 26%.
The US was the most important source market for the city with 19% of arriving visitors, with the UK in second place with 9% of arrivals.