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Home* News and Stories → Star­ting tou­rism up again in July?

Star­ting tou­rism up again in July?

Spits­ber­gen is cur­r­ent­ly almost com­ple­te­ly clo­sed to tou­rism. Only local inha­bi­tants and Nor­we­gi­ans may come at all, theo­re­ti­cal­ly also Nor­we­gi­an tou­rists, but ever­y­bo­dy has to stay in qua­ran­ti­ne for 14 days unless an excep­tio­nal per­mis­si­on is given in spe­cial cases. The air­line SAS is, howe­ver kee­ping the air traf­fic up, but the­re is men­ti­on of 10 flight pas­sen­gers per day in average, and the­se will hard­ly be tou­rists. The air­line Nor­we­gi­an is cur­r­ent­ly plan­ning to start fly­ing again in June.

The shut­down does obvious­ly have serious con­se­quen­ces for the local eco­no­my, inclu­ding rising unem­ploy­ment and calls for dona­ti­ons for examp­le from small com­pa­nies that have polar dogs, some­thing that has, by the way, at least part­ly been suc­cess­ful to some degree.

Nobo­dy knows when Spits­ber­gen will be open again for tou­rists. The fur­ther deve­lo­p­ment of the pan­de­mic will be decisi­ve, as you may have gues­sed, and decisi­ons have to be made on various levels.

Tourists, Longyearbyen

Tou­rists in Lon­gye­ar­by­en: Nobo­dy knows when they will return.

Now Longyearbyen’s mayor (lokals­ty­re­le­der) Arild Olsen has told Sval­bard­pos­ten that he wants to con­si­der ope­ning up for tou­rism again in July, “pos­si­b­ly limi­ted and we have to accept that it will be only Nor­we­gi­an tou­rists, to begin with”, as Olsen says. Limi­ta­ti­ons in an area that is still remo­te and does not have lar­ge-sca­le sophisti­ca­ted medi­cal infras­trac­tu­re will hard­ly sur­pri­se anyo­ne, but limi­ta­ti­ons per natio­na­li­ty may rise an eye­brow, con­si­de­ring the Spits­ber­gen trea­ty.

But the­re is obvious­ly still a way to go any­way befo­re any tou­rists will return to Spits­ber­gen or other remo­te desti­na­ti­ons.

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last modification: 2020-04-28 · copyright: Rolf Stange
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