Myanmar’s end to military rule and new leadership under Aung San Suu Kyi have ushered in a new era of global tourism for the country. Among the results is the American Society of Travel Advisors’ decision to form a new Myanmar chapter and announce its intention to partner with Myanmar tourism on outreach efforts to travel advisors.
At the same time, the country’s forced evacuation of an estimated 900,000 Rohingya Muslims has tarnished the new government and raised ethical questions about traveling there. The controversy also dredges up the old thorny issues surrounding travel boycotts: Are they effective in changing government policy or do they just hurt the local providers and stifle the flow of outside ideas? Myanmar is an intriguing destination, but should travel advisors be promoting it to their clients just now? There’s no simple answer.
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Travel Association Forms Myanmar Chapter But Will the Government Benefit? ASTA’s new Myanmar chapter and planned partnership with Myanmar tourism will give travel advisors new opportunities to learn about an emerging destination. However, it also raises ethical concerns about supporting a country that engages in ethnic cleansing.
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Skift Travel Advisor Editor Maria Lenhart [email@example.com] curates the Skift Travel Advisor Innovation Report. Skift emails the newsletter every Tuesday. Have a story idea? Or a juicy news tip? Want to share a memo? Send her an email.