With the COVID 19 pandemic catching the world by surprise, many of us were not ready for strict social isolation measures. The Coronavirus was looked at as a “Foreign” Virus by most governments, but within a few days, the virus became a global pandemic reaching all the corners of the planet. As many of us were caught off guard, unreadiness and chaos came to prominence along with rumors, false information, new social and health standards and much more !
It’s no secret that a lot of people are suffering during these hard times but also a lot of sectors and economic structures are forced to close and wait for the unknown. The travel and hospitality businesses are of course the first to endure the consequences of events of such national or international caliber. This time however, we have no ETA for remedy or cure (at least for the time being !), we are putting ourselves in self Isolation, forcing ourselves out of our businesses but also “we don’t know if this is going to end soon or last forever” adding to the endless uncertainties that our world’s currently facing. I mean, some people even think it is the end of the world ! Unless proven otherwise, there’s nothing that proves it’s not. Did you notice this sequence ? We started from socioeconomic analysis of the global travel industry and we ended up in the end of the world ! How in the world did we get there ? It’s just the brain structure, our thinking mechanism, our vulnerable human nature and we just have to embrace it but also face it.
When we talk about damages caused by the pandemic, small business owners will have a lot to say. French VIP Service was started as a bridge travel agency linking the French speaking tourists to U.S attractions and mainly those in South Florida. As we started, our services grew to include non-french speaking tourists. Our business is based on two elements : people and attractions. Well, the people aren’t coming and the attractions are shutting. With a simple math operation, you’ll realize that we’re technically unoperational until further notice. As I am putting this article together, I hear that the Mayor of Miami ordered all bars, restaurants, clubs to close immediately after 11 PM tonight (3/17/2020). Our best sellers include city, beach, social and nightlife packages. Now, we’re 100% sure we’re out of business – at least for a while. As optimists, it is safe to say that we’ll finally have some time to scale our future operations, sales & marketing and rethink our general strategy. As managers and business developers, putting in place a contingency plan that tackles the next few days and maybe weeks is vital for our existence.
As a manager and a business developer, here are my priorities for the next few days and maybe even weeks :
My losses as a small business owner operating in the travel industry are nothing compared to some businesses that I deal with. Miami lives on tourism and so does South Florida in general. We thrive on our high standards of hospitality. We are sure we will recover and we can even have a rebound Tsunami effect meaning, if this virus somehow gets cured, we can comfortably presume on overload of upcoming reservations of people who cancelled out their plans due to the pandemic. If this scenario takes place, then we will have to be ready to serve !
We will be sharing our thoughts and opinions here and there. Stay strong and tuned !
Written by our tourism professional Marcelo O. for French VIP Service
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