For two decades now, on the occasion of the National Day, the Chinese government has been granting all its inhabitants a week off called Golden Week. These few days off are usually a great opportunity for people to travel and have fun in Macau casinos for example. This year, it seems that things are not going to be as usual, as the government has reported new cases of COVID-19 contamination. As a result, the population has been forced to reduce travel in order to limit the risk of contagion. These waves of cancellations will undoubtedly have a significant impact on the future of Macau City’s casinos.
A new wave of contamination reported
On Saturday, September 25th, the health authorities of the city of Macau announced two new cases of coronavirus contamination. They were two security guards working in a hotel establishment of the place. It is during the routine tests that these two people have been tested positive.
Faced with this situation, the government rushed to put in place control measures to slow down the evolution and prevent new cases of contamination. Among the restrictions put in place are the screening campaigns that have been launched among the city’s residents.
From now on, all travel inside or outside the city will be conditioned by the presentation of a PCR test justifying the state of health of the person wishing to travel. The test presented must have been done within the last 24 hours. Needless to say, if the test is positive, no further travel is possible.
Faced with the new cases of contamination mentioned above, many people have cancelled their trip to the city of Macau. Some of them explained that they did not want to take any risk and put their health in danger.
Others said they did not want to face once again the preventive measures put in place and still others were afraid of being confined when they returned from their vacations in Macau.
According to the figures, there are about 40 to 50% of travelers who planned to travel to Macau City during the Golden Week scheduled between October 1 and 7. They were forced to cancel. The above figures take into account only the Chinese nationals and could well go beyond if we take into account the foreigners who were planning to travel for the same occasion.
It is important to note that this wave of cancellations will have a really considerable impact on the economy of the casinos that have been in decline since the advent of the health crisis. Indeed, many gambling establishments were waiting for the opportunity of the Golden Week to fill their coffers which could have helped them to recover and start to recover financially.
Despite the fact that Macau, the former Portuguese colony, only had a two-week lockdown in February 2020 during which casinos and other gambling establishments were closed, it must be admitted that it is having a hard time getting its activities back on track, unlike other jurisdictions.
One of the reasons for their difficulties is the drop in the number of tourists in the city. So it’s kind of the death knell for them to think that the golden week will not go as they predicted and thought.
Some people think that the restrictions related to travel bans can be cancelled soon, but the big problem is definitely the travel cancellations, because experts don’t know if the residents will reverse their decision and at the same time no one can force them to do so.
Now that new cases have been reported, it seems that China will redouble its efforts to fight covid-19 in the future. And with uncertainty about the effectiveness of vaccines, officials are once again planning to implement a zero-tolerance policy against the virus. If things continue to be so complicated, Macau’s casinos may only be out of business by 2022 or even 2023.