By Mike Kinnerk ‘20

You know the coronavirus is bad when all of the moms on facebook are sharing lame memes and going into complete and utter pandemonium. COVID-19, or the Coronavirus, has been the talk of the town. It has affected big business and countless industries. The travel industry is one industry in particular that has been slammed by this epidemic.

You’ve heard the stories of people being trapped on cruise ships for weeks or getting off planes and suddenly feeling ill. President Donald Trump even put a travel ban on countries with the highest case rates. People are scared of this disease, which prevents them from wanting to travel.

My mom owns a travel agency and her business has taken a big blow from the Coronavirus. Countless clients have called and cancelled their upcoming travel plans out of fear and concern for their health. The Coronavirus is everywhere.

The worst part of it all is that this is one of the busiest times of year for traveling. Kids are off school for spring break, so everyone wants to get away. Now my mom and her colleagues are losing the money they worked so hard to earn planning these perfect spring break getaways.

“For the agency as a whole, we are projected to lose tens of thousands of dollars in commision due to the Coronavirus,” said my mom, Meg Kinnerk, owner of Mickey’s Dream Vacations.

Tourism has taken such a toll due to the mass amount of cancellations that have occurred due to the Coronavirus. Prices have drastically decreased just to get patrons in the doors.

“I have been finding very cheap flights ever since this scare began. You can fly from Chicago to Orlando nonstop around Easter for $54 on Southwest. That is a mega steal,” Meg said. “Airlines are doing everything they can to just get people in the seats. This virus is really hitting this industry hard.”

With tourism being one of the largest money making industries in the world, the world economy is obviously affected by this epidemic. We’ve seen the crazy fluctuation of the DOW over the past few weeks because of the Coronavirus. The rest of the economy is also taking a major hit.

“The Coronavirus’ effect is almost as bad as the effect 9/11 had on my industry,” said Meg. “It all comes down to the fear factor. People are scared to travel because they don’t want to fly, just like after 9/11.”

Hopefully we can find a way to mitigate the spread of the virus and restore normalcy back into the world.