“Jogo de Cintura” is Bound to Prevail: Whenever INBOUND has had trouble understanding, or in trying to explain, the vagaries of the Brazilian tourism market, we remind ourselves of a polished bit of wisdom offered up several years ago by Celeyta Jackson, a Brazilian/New Yorker and long-time tourism industry veteran in working the Brazilian inbound market for entities such as New York City & Company, who told us about the “Jogo de Cintura” of Brazilians. Literally translated as “game waist,” the expression suggests more of an attitude that, say, a soccer player takes into a challenging match. For Brazilians, Jackson explained, it means “having the dexterity and flexibility to overcome obstacles and situations.” (The Cambridge Dictionary has it about the same: “clever or skilful/skillful actions to achieve something or deal with a problem.”
So, “having the dexterity and flexibility to overcome obstacles and situations” seems to be precisely what has been taking place in the Brazilian travel and tourism industry. Brazil, which until the beginning of September, was second only to the United States in the number of deaths due to COVD-19, is giving off and/or sending out signals that collectively, almost defiantly, tell us that they will recover and prosper once again. Put another way: Brazilian travelers are well aware of what some might call a dire situation, but they will overcome—because of their Jogo do Cintura.
One can read the latest (August) issue of the Brazilian Overview Monthly Report from the trade publication PANROTAS and FecomercioSP, widely known for its economic research and products. Some points from the Monthly Report follow.
—For five months now, the overall Brazilian economy has been recovering faster than expected. Agribusiness has performed very well, managing to supply the whole country and avoiding food shortages.
—The city of São Paulo and other major centers gradually reopened their business in June. There was a repressed demand, however, people having to adapt themselves to the “new normal”, staying at home for longer periods, contributed to the greater demand for small renovations, computer products, household appliances, cleaning articles and so on.
—Travel and tourism is experiencing a slow and gradual recovery, starting with short leisure trips through Brazil (preferably by car), visits to relatives and weekend getaways. These follow the recovery trends seen around the world.
—Brazilian national airlines are operating about 30 percent of their pre-pandemic network and should operate 60 percent to 70 percent until the end of the year.
—Three major American carriers (American, Delta and United) already operate between Brazil and the United States, still with much less capacity compared to the period before the crisis.
—In hotels, the majority of the resorts have reopened (a few have left the reopening for September) and almost 80 percent of the chain hotels are open. Budget hotels have had better results in the resumption, which, in this case, should be faster.
—Eager-to-travel, Brazilians prefer the Northeast region and national destinations for the end of the year, but keeping an eye for promotions, especially to Florida, the Caribbean and Europe. Information about Brazilians’ resumption and intention to travel can be found in the three surveys launched by TRVL LAB during the pandemic. (www.trvl.com.br). TRVL LAB is a market intelligence laboratory, a partnership between PANROTAS and MAPIE. (The PANROTAS Forum, which was scheduled for last week, was postponed to March 16 and 17 2021.)
While Working toward Recovery, the People of Rio Are Less Inclined to Travel: Earlier this year, the results of a survey by Unigranrio (University of Grande Rio, located in Duque de Caxias, which is part of the Rio de Janeiro metropolitan area) showed that the global pandemic was certainly having an impact on the travel intentions of Rio’s residents.(The main objectives were to identify the change in perception and behavior and the results of the survey were assessed on an average of a scale from 0 to 10.)
—Among the 1,296 residents interviewed, a decline in the propensity to travel both domestically (-28 percent) was identified and internationally (-36 percent).
—Health and sanitary conditions were also aspects that underwent major changes. Before, travelers scarcely researched the health conditions of the destination (average 4.7), but with the pandemic, there was a 79 percent increase in this type of action.
—The crowding of people in a tourist attraction was also not a concern (average 4.9), but soon increased by 81 percent. Concern for their own health increased by 20 percent.
—On consumer behavior, the pandemic appears to have increased the time travelers are connected. Before the pandemic, respondents already considered themselves connected (average 7.7) and informed (average 7.6), but both aspects increased: the first by 11 percent and the second by 8 percent. Responsibility to the environment has also increased by percent with the pandemic.
Other data points from the research included the following question-and-response sets.
—How will the covid-19 monitoring information affect your travel decision? Average of 8.99.
—How important do you think the tourist activity is for your well-being? Average of 8.78.
—How important do you think tourism is to the economic development of the city where you live? Average of 9.34.
—How much do you think you know the tourist attractions of the city where you live? Average of 7.76.