May 25, 2024

The effects of terrorism on international tourism

5 min read

The effects of terrorism on international tourism.

Due to the rising number of terrorist attacks in the world, international tourism has reached its lowest level in more than a decade. The fear of terrorism has caused people from all corners of the world to avoid traveling abroad. This has had a deep impact on the global economy as tourism is one of the essential source of revenue for many developing countries.

Negative Impact on Economy

Terrorism has caused a sharp decline in the number of tourists visiting other countries, resulting in a huge loss to their economies. For instance, countries like Iraq, Syria, and Afghanistan, which were once popular tourist destinations, have now become too dangerous for people to visit. This has resulted in a decrease in the revenue coming from international tourists, causing these countries to suffer huge economic losses.

Fear of Terrorism

The threat of terrorism has also led to a sense of insecurity in many parts of the world. People are afraid to travel to other countries due to the fear of encountering terrorists or getting caught in the crossfire of a terrorist attack. In addition, the security situation in some countries is so precarious that international agencies have issued travel warnings and advisories against visiting certain locations.

Impact on Other Industries

The decline in international tourism has had a ripple effect on many other industries and sectors. Airlines, hotels, restaurants, and other businesses related to tourism have been hit hard by this decline. These businesses, which were once highly profitable, have seen their profits drastically reduced due to the decrease in the number of tourists.

Loss of Cultural Exchange

The decline in international tourism has also had a negative impact on the cultural exchange between different countries. Tourists were once an important part of spreading cultural values and norms from one country to another. With fewer people traveling, the exchange of knowledge, traditions, and culture has been greatly reduced.

Reversing the Trend

Fortunately, governments around the world are taking steps to improve security and ensure that travelers feel safe. In addition, nations have also relaxed visa requirements to encourage tourists to visit their countries. These efforts will help to restore international tourism and rebuild the global economy.


The effects of terrorism on international tourism can not be overstated. It has caused a decrease in the number of travelers visiting other countries, resulting in financial losses for many economies. Moreover, it has also had a negative impact on cultural exchange between different nations. Governments around the world need to continue their efforts to improve security and boost tourism in order to revive the global economy.

Effects of Terrorism on International Tourism

Terrorism has become a global reality, and its effects can be felt in numerous industries, not least in the tourism sector. High profile attacks in just the past few years have done significant damage, both to the esteem of certain popular holiday destinations and to the tourism industry in many countries.

Decreasing Confidence

When terrorist attacks occur, people naturally become more and more cautious about visiting a given location, for fear of similar or worse events occurring. For some countries, this can have long lasting repercussions, as international confidence in the safety of a given destination is not easily recovered and may even be permanently damaged.

Short-Term Declines in Visitor Numbers

It is not uncommon for people to quickly cancel their holiday plans and avoid travelling to a location which has recently experienced a terrorist incident. This has potentially wide-reaching and damaging effects on a tourism industry which may take years to recover.

Long-Term Effects

Terrorism-related damage may spread well beyond declines in visitor numbers. When people perceive a given destination as unsafe, this can lead to long-term damage in terms of:

  • Investment: Investors may avoid putting money into companies within the destination, leading to potentially long-term decreases in prosperity within the tourism industry;
  • Brand Value: The reputation of the destination may suffer greatly, making it hard to attract new visitors in the future.


It is clear that terrorist incidents can have a severe and prolonged impact on tourism, damaging potential visitor numbers and harming local businesses. Many countries have experienced the damaging effects of terrorism, and unfortunately this is an issue that is unlikely to go away quickly. The events of 9/11 will remain in the memories of many people around the world as a devastating day. The terror attack, along with many other acts of terror committed around the world since then, have had a major impact on international tourism. This has been felt in both direct and indirect ways.

Since 9/11, the number of international visitors to the United States has dropped significantly with the total number of international visitors dropping from 60.4 million in 2000 to 49.7 million in 2019. Other countries such as France, Tunisia, and the UK have also been hit hard in terms of international tourism with terrorism being the root cause.

The effects of terrorism on international tourism have been both economic and emotional. Economically, the hotel and airline industries have been negatively affected due to tightened security measures, increased insurance costs, and a drop in consumer demand. Emotionally, people around the world have become more cautious when planning international trips. This has resulted in travelers staying away from tourist hotspots and essential changed the face of international travel.

In addition to the direct impacts of terrorism, the indirect effects of terrorism are often overlooked. There has been an increased focus on political uncertainty and instability, which can act as a deterrent to tourism. Furthermore, terrorist attacks can harm a country’s reputation, which can lead to further decreases in international visitors. This can be seen in the cases of Tunisia, France, and the UK, who have all had to work to repair their reputations in the international sphere in the wake of serious terrorist attacks.

Lastly, terrorism has negatively impacted international tourism in terms of safety. Since 9/11, governments around the world have taken steps to protect tourists, including increased security, longer lines at airport terminals, and closed borders. While these steps are necessary to protect tourists, they can also make international travel less appealing.

In conclusion, terrorism has had a major impact on international tourism. It has negatively affected the industry both directly and indirectly, and the effects can still be seen today. The only way to reduce these impact going forward is to ensure that terrorism is dealt with firmly and swiftly.