Valuation of Travel Bubbles: Assessing Cooperative Travel Arrangements in a Pandemic

ACI recently hosted a webinar titled “Valuation of Travel Bubbles: Assessing Cooperative Travel Arrangements in a Pandemic” on Tuesday, 10 Aug 2021.

In the webinar, Dr Xie Taojun presented the latest ACI research paper “Impact of Travel Bubbles: Cooperative Travel Arrangements in a Pandemic”, co-authored with Dr Wang Jiao and Liu Shiqi. The research evaluates both economic and health benefits of various travel arrangements. It highlights that the most desirable travel arrangement in a pandemic is one emphasizing more on domestic containment than cross-border travel restrictions.

Despite border control being a popular measure that is adopted across the world, it can only be used as an interim measure. This is because border control delays the infection waves, resulting in a prolonged economic recession. During the implementation of border control, people should get vaccinated as soon as possible. As the people get vaccinated and borders are reopened, spikes in infections are expected but are not a cause of alarm. The research also evaluates the cases of Singapore – Hong Kong, and Australia – New Zealand travel bubbles, concluding that the benefits are likely to be uneven between countries / regions at stake.

A panel discussion following the presentation centered around the examples of travel bubbles and the future of travel. The panel discussed hurdles to mutual agreements between countries / regions. In their concluding notes, our panelists agreed that the future of travel will be reshaped, especially for business travel.

By Taojun XIE

Researchers: Taojun XIE, Jiao WANG, Shiqi LIU 

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