Sri Lanka is safe to travel, with zero protests since early July, and with the introduction of a QR code system, fuel availability and accessibility has greatly improved and the queues are no more. While the economy is still on a difficult footing, there is political and social stability, and the country is safe. Island life goes on.
In the last few months Sri Lanka faced the worst economic crisis it has ever faced, prompted by longstanding mismanagement of the country’s economy and compounded by the COVID pandemic. People’s protests, peaceful and passionate in spirit, sprouted across the country and continued until early July, when the calls for the former President to step down were finally answered.
Since early July the country has seen much change and improvement, the swearing in of a new President and cabinet of ministers, and queues being cut short with increased availability of fuel, gas, food and medicine. The people’s protests have accomplished a great deal in peacefully asserting a movement for change in the political landscape to improve conditions for the people.
International media agencies unfortunately chose to focus reporting on the 2 days where the protests turned violent, where pro-government factions clashed with protestors, rather than the many months of peaceful protests. Such reporting, even though tourists were never at risk during the protests, has had a truly devastating impact on tourism, which is considered the most important pillar in reviewing the falling economy.
Tourism in Sri Lanka, until recently, was the 2nd highest net foreign currency earner for the country. In the past approximately 300,000 Sri Lankans worked directly in tourism, with about 3 million Sri Lankans indirectly benefitting from tourism through the supply chain. Many people have lost their livelihoods due to the economic crisis, and Sri Lanka needs her tourists back more than ever.
At Santani, even during these many months of hardship, we have seen an average occupancy of 23%, with guests enjoying our sublime sanctuary tucked away in the hills. Safe and reliable transfers were organized by the industry, a task made simpler by the government providing fuel to all registered hotels and tourism service providers through the Ceylon Transport Board. With transport taken care of, guests have enjoyed their stays at Santani, indulging in all we have to offer, without any worries.
Our guests on their experience in Sri Lanka and at Santani
With the state of emergency lifted, travel advisories being relaxed in many countries, and Sri Lanka being safe to travel, this paradise island is all set to return to normalcy; with the support of international travelers choosing Sri Lanka as their next holiday destination. Even more than enjoying the great Sri Lankan hospitality, it’s helping a nation in need get back on its feet, it’s helping another human being survive unprecedented adversity.