Myanmar Outlines Robust 3-Phase Plan to Tourism Recovery

Myanmar released details this week of what it calls a Strategic Roadmap for Tourism Recovery that will establish new normal conditions for tourism to make a comeback. The announcement was made by U Ohn Maung, Union Minister of Ministry of Hotels and Tourism in Nay Pyi Taw Wednesday, providing guidelines for implementation of the plan.

During the meeting, the Union Minister said: “The tourism industry in the “new normal” condition will re-operate step by step in accordance with the ministry’s roadmap and in cooperation with related tourism organizations.”

A strategic recovery plan for Myanmar tourism industry in the post-period of Covid-19 has been at the drafting stage since April. The final draft released this week and forwarded to the travel trade by the Myanmar Tourism Federation encompasses three phases.

Phase 1: Survival

In the Survival phase, taxes will be relaxed, license fees will be reduced, rental fees will be postponed and loans will be provided for the hotels and tourism businesses. There will be more online training for tourism professionals and staff, organized by the Ministry of Hotels & Tourism.

Phase 2: Reopen

In the reopening phase two, tourism short term measures focusing on health and hygiene as well as domestic tourism will be implemented in June, July and August. Standard operating procedure (SOP) will be required for the health and safety of travellers and staff. Domestic travel will focus on opening travel to local destinations starting in June. Pagodas, museums and parks will also be reopened in accordance with the national guidelines issued by the Ministry of Health and Sports.

Relaunch

The third phase focuses on sustained relaunching of travel content over six months to a year, and this will include a new marketing campaign and a long-term plan that will reimagine and reposition Myanmar tourism. The government plans to create “travel bubbles” through bilateral agreements with Thailand, Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam during this phase.

The government introduced an extension of temporary entry restrictions for travellers from all countries until 15 June.  However, Yangon International airport terminal remains operational for all domestic flights and special relief or repatriation flights. “Myanmar Tourism Marketing is planning to launch a domestic tourism campaign together with the Ministry of Hotels & Tourism and other travel associations,” said Myanmar Tourism Marketing chairperson May Myat Mon Win. “We need to start with domestic tourism then we will open up to regional countries and followed by the long haul markets after the Covid-19 pandemic eases.”

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