ETHICAL/ Natural Disasters: Real Force Majeure for Tourism

Natural disasters – floods, rains, earthquakes, volcano eruptions – impact immensely the tourism industry of the affected destinations. Learn about the Valtellina Flood, tsunami, Machu Picchu’s troubles with rain as well as the volcanoes in Iceland.


The Valtellina Flood: Destroying Roads, Rails and Tourism

Joe McClain

Valtellina is the common name used for the Alpine province of Sondrio, in Northern Italy. This long valley became very famous in the summer of 1987, when a huge flood hit the whole area. An incredibly warm summer caused the glaciers to release a great quantity of water, which summed up to exceptionally heavy storms (the rainfall of two months fell in just three days). As a result, the rivers broke the banks, submerging villages and destroying roads and rails. There were fifty-three casualties...

Tsunami’s Effects on Tourism

Andrew J. Wein

Tourism companies sell Asian nature and cultural landscapes to their customers. Asia is a land rich in different cultures, which is what makes traveling there so appealing. South and Southeast Asia sits along the Indian Ocean, a warm, inviting, and relaxing place to be. This was the case until the earthquake off the coast of Sumatra caused a tsunami along the coast on December 26, 2004. Asian governments were urging Western tourists not to change their travel plans. Tourism plays an important e...

Emergency: Machu Picchu Closed

Laura Maudlin

Tourism is often described as a fragile industry in that demand for travel is highly susceptible to numerous factors. Nevertheless, for many countries the tourism sector is an important contributor to the economy. Especially in some less economically developed countries the local economy is dependent upon and greatly relies upon the tourism industry. One of the most unforeseeable forces affecting tourism are natural disasters. Natural disasters can have a tremendous impact on tourism as they usu...

Crisis Management: Eyjafjallajokull Eruption

Gary Diskin

Mt. Eyjafjallajokull eruption in Iceland wreaked havoc on Europe’s air transport system and threatened to turn off the steady number of foreign tourists expected to visit Iceland in 2010. Tourism stakeholders in Iceland, alarmed by twenty percent drop in visitor numbers in April and May compared to the previous year, got together and pooled their efforts in a joint marketing campaign named Inspired by Iceland. The eruption claimed no lives and no homes were destroyed. A column of extremel...

Joining Forces: Inspired by Iceland

Wayne M. Gore

On 14 April 2010 a volcanic eruption started under the Eyjafjallajökull glacier in Iceland, generating considerable news about the country, some of it inaccurate. The eruption’s impact and the ash clouds that it caused are now infamous in the tourism industry worldwide. Within days of the eruption, a wave of cancellations began across all sectors and tourist arrivals shrank by 22% in April alone. Had the situation been ignored, it would have had a disastrous impact on the important tourism indus...