Editor’s note: This story is a part of a series that explores the lasting impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and how things have changed on and off campus.
The tourism industry is one of the most lucrative in Utah, with visitors coming from all over the world to experience the state’s natural beauty and outdoor recreation. COVID-19 has hit Utah tourism hard, forcing workers in the industry to find creative ways to adapt.
Vicki Varela, managing director of the Utah Office of Tourism, said Utah tourism — normally a $10 billion industry — will see a serious dip in revenue this year.
“The tourism industry depends on people going places, and nobody has been going anywhere since March,” she said.
International travel bans are a significant contributor to this, Varela said. International visitors make up