In this week’s first podcast, David and Catherine are joined by Dillip Rajakarier, Group CEO of Minor International and CEO of Minor Hotels. With exposure in almost 60 markets around the world, Minor has taken a country-by-country approach to tackling the crisis, always putting the safety and welfare of their teams and guests first. Looking at the crisis from the perspective of Minor’s home base in Thailand, Dillip says regional travel will return first, but international arrivals will take much longer to come back. Even countries such as Sri Lanka, which he praises for the speed at which they got the virus under control, will struggle because the strict curfews have brought the country’s economy to its knees.
On the other hand, Dillip believes the crisis may force change upon certain destinations like the Maldives that desperately need recalibrating. Recent years have seen the country navigate towards a lower-cost market, which was not good for the country, and he hopes this may cause the Maldives to return to its roots as a high-end luxury destination.