ccording to the unfortunate events happening in Myanmar, Tourism is undoubtedly falling apart, and many local people are suffering and facing an economic crisis.

Nonetheless, urban people in Myanmar are now interested in hotel staycation and domestic travel after the Covid-19 third wave is settling down. 

Recently, many urban people traveled to beaches and mountains during the Thadingyut Festival holidays in October. The hotels that were opened for services were mostly sold out in safer tourist hotspots during that time, and heavy traffic was seen at the tollgates.

Pros of traveling in Current Situation

One of the advantages of traveling in the current situation is that hotels and transportation services are giving promotions to attract customers, as many people are not traveling as much as in previous times. 

Also, most white-collar workers are currently engaged in ‘work from home’ because of Covid-19 and the political crisis. Therefore, they can enjoy a staycation in nearby hotels or attraction sites with lower transportation costs, and discounts on accommodations and activities.

Since there are not many people interested in traveling right now, travelers would not face crowded situations. They can relax and enjoy the scenery or activities without too much disturbance.

Golden Rock Pagoda (2021)
Golden Rock Pagoda Trekking Path (2021)

Cons of traveling in Current Situation

As a lot of Myanmar people disagree with the military coup, there have been numerous protests and violent incidents since February 2021. Many youths have been arrested, while others have fled away to the mountains and villages. As a consequence, there are investigation gates along the roads and some people assumed that it wouldn’t be safe to travel. 

On the other hand, the junta government has to deal with many issues, and they could not cover the health safety of citizens during Covid-19 third wave which roughly started from June 2021 to the present time. Most Myanmar people lost their beloved families and friends because of the severe break out of the Covid-19 third wave. As many people are not fully vaccinated, for now, traveling in this situation might be risky.

Different Perspectives of Myanmar People on Travelling

Disputes are currently occurring between  Myanmar People, and it includes the topic of traveling as well.

Some people need to escape from exhausting situations to get some peace of mind or reduce stress, while some are encouraged to show sympathy towards those who are on the run because of the political situation. They claim that they could not be happy nor relaxed while some of their people are suffering. On the other hand, some state that traveling can help local people. People from main tourism destinations like Bagan are solely dependent on income from visitors, but they are now facing difficulties since tourism is declining. Hence, traveling now could enhance their income and business.

It would be difficult to decide what is right or wrong, and it depends very much on people's individual minds and personal preferences.

Chaung Tha Beach (2021)

Real-Life Situation

A trip we used to go as a day return trip now becomes an overnight trip, but travelers can enjoy the benefits of a budget-friendly trip with a private traveling life experience.

Phway, who is currently working as a hotel staff member in a famous hotel and starting up her tour agency at the same time, said that she also has some difficulties arranging tour packages. The trip takes longer than before as a result of martial law and investigation along the way. For example, a trip we used to go as a day return trip now becomes an overnight trip. Thus, it could be time-wasting for some people. Also, visitors might not get full service in their respective accommodation as some hotels reduced their labor force due to fewer customers and the economic crisis. However, she also said despite the above difficulties, travelers can enjoy the benefits of a budget-friendly trip with a private traveling life experience.

To conclude, regardless of the pros and cons, agrees or disagreements, we can assume that domestic tourism in Myanmar has begun to revive and is on a pathway of recovery.

Photo Credit Just-go Tours and Rental service

November 17, 2021