The last time we checked in on the state of the Brazilian travel and tourism industry (Click here to access “Brazilian Comeback Gains Momentum” in the Sept. 29, 2020 issue of INBOUND), the Brazilian travel and tourism industry seemed to be faring better than most countries important to the inbound U.S. tourism industry. And despite travel bans brought on by the COVID-19 crisis—Brazil is number two in the number of coronavirus deaths, behind only the United States—the country continues to plow ahead toward a recovery that they seem to be certain will come.
The latest Brazilian Overview Monthly Report published jointly by PANROTAS—the Brazilian trade media and event company—and FecomercioSP, the São Paulo-based business and economic organization, walks the reader through six pages of information that tells the reader the up-to-date numbers and trends regarding the country’s economy and tourism industry. INBOUND highlights some of the major points the Overview makes in the latest report.
—Notwithstanding a global pandemic due to COVID 19, the national economy is moving slowly in the right direction. However, said the Overview, the economy will face a major challenge in 2021, when emergency aid measures expire.
—While business activity figures in the tourism industry register on the negative side—it declined 2.7 percent in August—the overall recovery is being driven by other sectors, such as the manufacture of food products; oil and oil products; and beverages. The Overview suggests that some businesses were not prepared for the resumption of demand earlier than expected.
—Inflation for the year was at 1.34 percent for the year—up to September, but in the food and beverages group, which makes up the largest part of household budget, was up 7.3 percent. (This begs the question: Will some households lack level of disposable income needed for travel?)
—All factors considered, consumer confidence is behaving reasonably. The Consumer Confidence Index (ICC) increased 5.6 percent in September, from 102.6 points in August to 108.4 points (at the time the Overview was published). And although it was 3.6 percent below the level of September 2019, the ICC is above 100 points: this number is in the optimistic area. Also, the Retail Businessmen Confidence Index (ICEC) experienced a third consecutive monthly increase, reaching 85.9 points in September,
—Summer is coming soon. (Summer 2020 in Southern Hemisphere begins on December 21
and ends on March 20, 2021) and Brazil is preparing for the high season of recovery. There is already big movement for domestic travel, as well as a great desire among Brazilians to see the borders reopened for international travel.
—Tour operators have had to focus almost 100 percent of their sales efforts on domestic travel for the summer, but also on selling international travel for 2021. The results, notes the Overview, are promising: in September, CVC—the country’s largest travel company—announced that the sale of resorts and hotels packages was already at 80 percent compared with 2019 volume.
—Data released by the Brazilian Tour Operators Association (Braztoa) confirm a recovery, although it is one that is slowly moving. Braztoa’s latest monthly survey revealed that Brazilian travelers are beginning to plan their trips in advance. In September, 75 percent of the operators associated with Braztoa said they had sold trips for the first half of 2021, followed by itineraries that will take place in December (60 percent), with 47 percent of operators having sold trips for the second half of 2021.
—USA is still a destination favorite. According to the survey, internationally, the most sought-after destinations are: Cancún, accompanied by other Caribbean regions, followed by the United States and the Maldives. Portugal, Italy and Argentina are also in great demand.
—Practically, all international airlines have resumed flights to Brazil, but traffic between Brazil and the USA is nil. (However, on Oct. 26, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said that he supports lifting federal COVID-19 restrictions on travelers from the United Kingdom and Brazil to help Florida’s struggling tourism industry. At the same time, Britons are in the midst of a complete lockdown.)