The Jakarta Post
The Association of Indonesian Hotels and Restaurants (PHRI) has estimated that about 70,000 foreign tourists postponed their plans to visit Bali in October and November because of reports of seismic activity of Mount Agung.
"We have collected data on guests who had planned [to visit]. There will be about a 20 percent decrease," PHRI Bali chairman Tjokorda Oka Artha Ardana Sukawati said as reported by Antara.
Of those who have informed of their postponement, most would have been involved in meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (MICE), said Tjokorda, adding that the number could be higher because not all hostels submitted reports of postponements or cancellations.Read also: Balinese priests climb active volcano despite ban
He called on the government to make clarifications over the alert status of the volcano as it had seriously affected the tourism industry. He said many tourists were misled by the status, which only applies to those within a 12-kilometer radius of the volcano.
“The tourist destinations beyond the area are safe,” he said.
October is usually the peak season for tourism in Bali.
No country has issued a travel warning. However, a travel advisory has been released by Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, the United Kingdom and the United States.
Meanwhile, Bali Governor Made Mangku Pastika has encouraged tourists to visit Bali without any hesitation. He said the resort island was safe despite the volcanic activity. (bbn)