Destinations

The Syrian civil war is killing Lebanon’s nascent tourism industry

Excerpt from Financial Times

Jan 08, 2013 1:09 am

Skift Take

Restaurants were thriving, luxury hotels were being built, and visitor arrivals were at an all-time high in 2010, but violence in neighboring Syria has kept tourists and locals at home even more so than Lebanon’s own 15-year civil war.

— Samantha Shankman

Free Report: The Changing Business of Extended-Stay Hotels

Heather Cowper  / Flickr.com

A tourist visits the castle at Sidon, Lebanon. Heather Cowper / Flickr.com


Lebanon is slashing airfares and hotel rates this week in to revive its tourism industry, which is reeling from the civil war in neighbouring Syria.

Middle East Airlines, the national carrier, is offering discounts of up to 50 per cent on selected packages for a 50-day period starting on Tuesday, while Fadi Abboud, the minister for tourism, says he has asked local politicians to tone down their rhetoric while the promotion is on. “We’re trying to change the mood,” he explains.

The government-led discount campaign reflects how the conflict in Syria has hurt tourism in Lebanon, which depends on direct and indirect revenues from the sector for more than a quarter of its gross domestic product.

Read the Complete Story →

Tags: ,

Next Up

More on Skift

Daily Travel Startup Watch: Fizzer, Travonline and More
Expedia Looks to Build Tours and Activities Without Acquisitions
Hilton Sees Filling Rooms on Weekends as New Trend
Free Webinar: How To Effectively Personalize Marketing Across Travel Sectors