From The Himalayan Times:
From The Himalayan Times:
More questions than answers.....but happy to strap in and watch this unfold....or not.
At the end of the article Lukas Furtenbach gives the most realistic view of the situation: country might open, but no clients this year. Lukas seems to be the most clear headed expedition company leader at the moment, I met hin in Argentina in February and he certainly made a positive impression.
I am personally somewhat pessimistic about any kind of fast recovery. Uncertainties about the Virus behaviour, travel related companies and airlines going belly up, worsening financial situation for many potential trekkers/travellers etc means things are not getting normal or even new normal for a long time to come.
I agree with your assessment, arkienkeli. We're getting a clearer picture of what the travel restart looks like. Phase one, no one comes. Phase two, only those willing to take big risks (not just health) will travel as well as those who have to. Phase three, lots of adjustments to protocols, entry requirements, etc. Phase four, maybe a return to higher volume and "new normal" travels. How long will this all take? Who really knows.
In Nepal the answer depends on who you ask. To a tour operator with a bank loan officer or landlord pressuring them weekly, tourism is ready to go. To the seasoned business owners who prepared for bad times, they're willing to wait for a year or two to get back to normal, if possible.
You must also add the situation in your originating country. In most countries, you will face a 14 day quarantine when coming back. In my country, Belgium, it is even against the law to travel outside Europe.
Quite right, there is also a possibility of restrictions suddenly coming back while you are away. Meaning that you might get stuck for days/weeks/months just about any border crossing along your planned travel route.
We had planned to drive/sail to Iceland with our own 4x4 (should be there now), but decided to cancel and take a (small) financial loss from tickets not fully refunded. Three borders to cross, minimum, each way. Even now we could not drive the shortest way through Sweden at thy are in travel lockdown, would have had to go via Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Germany, Denmark. What is the situation going to be in a month? Would not have liked to be in a situation to be forced to leave the truck in Iceland and fly home, maybe...
Treasury in Ozz is crunching its fiscal numbers based on the border reopening in January, along with the concept that confidence across all sectors will be the basis of recovery.
One would have thought that more than one false dawn and it will be just like the kid crying wolf. Travel confidence here needs interstate borders to open for domestic trips before talk of the National border and international ideas.
As pointed out in the article, trial and error would be a potentially pretty costly social and financial experiment. Vaccine anybody........
Sorry about your iceland trip. I've done several 4x4 and mountain bike trips there.
The government in Nepal is really struggling to handle this issue. In March they mandated several entry requirements including pre-arrival visas, but they never developed the system to issue them. They mandated arrival quarantines, but later hundreds of police were dispatched to track down people who didn't stay in quarantine, or even knew they had to. So, as you say, people who arrive here in the fall could find themselves subjected to another round of requirements and restrictions. This is not a place you want to be at the mercy of changing government policies.
Off topic, but about Iceland: We have been there like 5 times since 1980, once with our Defender 110 with 6 kids for 3 weeks. This was meant to be just two if us, 19 years later. Maybe next year, or next... Iceland will last forever, as will our Land Cruiser.