Indonesian Hospitality Industries Condition during COVID-19
The big disaster called COVID-19 spread all over the world. COVID-19 itself is an infectious disease caused by a coronavirus. COVID-19 has now become a pandemic that has occurred in many countries around the world, including Indonesia. This virus appeared in Wuhan since December 2019, and then entered to Indonesia in February and was confirmed by President Jokowi on 2 March after someone tested positive for COVID-19. At the end of March 2020, the Indonesian government gave the policy to limit community activities such as working from home and learning from home. It has a significant impact on many sectors, including the economic sector, the education sector, and so forth. As we all know, the tourism and hospitality industry sector in Indonesia suffers substantial losses because the government is urging to temporarily close tourism and close access to foreign tourists and local visitors to reduce the spread of COVID-19. It makes the hotel industry very bad and even forced to close its activities and lay off a number of its employees. The worst possibility is mass layoffs to reduce the company's financing.
Severe conditions in the tourism sector can be seen in the hotel industry in Jakarta, in February, the impact of Covid-19 had not felt, but the symptoms were few. Some companies, especially those involving foreign parties, began to decline, but there were still domestic guest activities. The decline in performance and revenue began to be felt in March when the government announced the Covid-19 case in Indonesia and caused canceling businesses. Of course, this greatly affected the income of the company. While in Bali, we can see that the hotel industry has begun to decline since the government closed flights to and from China. Tourists from China are the third-largest market in Bali. Tourist arrivals in Bali began to decline sharply in February by 30%. The sharpest decline came from Chinese tourists by 96%, while tourists from Australia is dropped by 19% from before. Global conditions will determine Bali tourism. The Bali market is foreign and domestic. The declining tourism in Bali occurs due to the spread of this virus. It has an impact on the decline of the hotel business in the region. PHRI (Indonesian Hotel & Restaurant Association) notes that hotel occupancy in Bali is only 20%. It means 80% of empty rooms, especially in areas that many travelers visit, such as Ubud, Kuta, Sanur, Legian, Jimbaran, and other regions.
Besides Jakarta and Bali, another city that is no less famous among tourists is Central Java. As an area that holds a lot of history and tourism that is famous in the eyes of foreign tourists, well-known regions in Central Java such as Magelang which contains one of the seven wonders the world namely Borobudur temple and Wonosobo, known as the country above the clouds, namely the Dieng region, the Sikunir hills, and mountain, also feel the impact of this COVID-19. In Wonosobo itself, hundreds of hotels are forced to close because there are traffic restrictions to and from Wonosobo. When tourism sites which are the primary destination for visitors are closed, of course, this presses the hospitality industry in the area and reduce income from the company, namely the hotel itself and also destroy the economy. And what's worse is that Central Java is occupying one of the provinces with the highest number of COVID-19 cases. It is something that needs special attention. It is only a small sample, and there are many regions whose hospitality industries have been affected by COVID-19 in Indonesia.
The hospitality industry itself has decreased due to many factors, one of which is caused by many airlines closing their flights and tight regulations from the government regarding foreigners entering Indonesia. Some hotels forced to suspend operations temporarily and lay off employees. The Chairman of the Indonesian Hotel and Restaurant Association PHRI (Indonesian Hotel & Restaurant Association) once said that the economy in Bali is currently the worst condition in history because the hotel occupancy rate has reached zero. Since April 2020, almost 96 % of hotels have closed because there are no more tourist visits. The number will continue to increase to 100 percent because tourists who are still there will back to their respective countries.
The hotel industry was one of the first industries to be affected by COVID-19 and is likely to be the industry sector that has experienced the most recovery. However, with various steps and innovations that the company has carried out during the COVID-19 pandemic, and after implementing the New Normal Era Health Protocol, and with a sense of optimism, the industry will once again develop. The new reasonable condition is the ordinary stage, but the extraordinary is the object that must be considered when starting to make these changes. This also forces the industry to be able to adapt to any conditions that arise and prepare for the "The New Normal" phase as a result of this pandemic, to maintain business continuity in the hospitality industries. Adapting to change is a significant key for hospitality industry players to survive amid significant economic pressures for the hotel industry. Besides, integrated solidarity and collaboration is also the key to accelerating the handling of COVID-19 and minimizing its impact.
There is something that can be done so that the hospitality business continues to run through these arduous conditions and be able to adapt to face "The New Normal" later. Among them is implementing operational standards following health protocols recommended by the government, as well as recommendations regarding business strategies relevant to this pandemic situation. There is any research from Deloitte. The title is Hospitality Impact of COVID-19, which recommends steps that the hospitality industry can take when dealing with the post-pandemic. These steps include taking into account the impact on occupancy and income levels while making emergency mitigation plans, and adapting and innovating regularly to changing situations.
According to the Deputy Chairman of the House of Representatives Commission X Education and Tourism, Dede Yusuf in the Webinar held by the Indonesian Food & Beverage Executive Association (IFBEC) and the Indonesian Hotel and Restaurant Association (PHRI). There are positive things that can be drawn from this pandemic situation. Because food and beverage demand is very high, especially when ordering food and drinks online, this can be a breakthrough that can be done during this pandemic. When viewed from the exposure of the Ministry of Tourism, the food and beverage industry is precisely the primary needs of the community. Through this messaging and delivery service, it might be an opportunity to change from the concept of catering or restaurant in a hotel to an online service. This way, hotels can open booking packages that support the situation in this pandemic, other breakthroughs, for sample by offering self-isolation packages for workers and migrants who are not permitted to return home.
As long as the health protocol is still being carried out, hotels can open self-insulation packages like stay at home packages. At this time, many workers who are at home or who could return home yesterday could not return to Jakarta due to the PSBB. Many houses that do not have a household assistant can not do particular activities. Finally, they choose lodging or hotels that offer self-isolation packages. So during this pandemic and entering the new standard period, we inevitably have to live side-by-side with COVID-19. What we need to do is maintain cleanliness and maintain physical distance and contact with others and maintain our bodies' health and immune.