San Diego tourism industry braces for impact of restrictions, travel advisories ahead of holidays

Posted at 1:17 PM, Nov 20, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-20 16:17:21-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) – San Diego’s tourism industry is preparing for a hit with restrictions and travel advisories in place ahead of the holidays.

Since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic in March, research shows the San Diego region has lost $4.6 billion in tourist money.

Last week, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced California, Oregon, and Washington were issuing a travel advisory, asking people to self-quarantine for 14 days if they’ve traveled out of the state or out of the country.

The announcement coincides with the CDC urging Americans to stay home and not travel over the holidays.

Local hotel owner Bob Rausch said he believes this won’t just hurt his business, but San Diego’s tourism in general. Rausch said tourism is an important part of the city’s economy.

“Even if you don’t work directly in the industry, you likely are getting the benefits of tourism,” said Rausch. “I don’t see any good news for the next six months because it’s not our peak season, there are no corporate travelers coming because of all the restrictions. And there aren’t any groups allowed in the state. And leisure travelers are being told to stay home and that was our only business.”

It's grim news for business owners who are trying to keep their doors open, and economists are predicting it will take five years for San Diego’s tourism to recover.