Can you imagine Bethlehem without tourism: the impacts of Covid-19 on Bethlehem, Palestine

Rami Isaac, W Abuaita

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


This research aims to investigate the impacts of Covid -19 on Bethlehem and examine the potential recovery strategies for the tourism sector during and after the pandemic. This research contributes in fulfilling intriguing gaps in literature on the impacts of Covid-19 on Bethlehem. All data collected were in the period of August and September 2020. This study is exploratory in nature applying qualitative and quantitative methods. Open-ended questions used in the interviews and the interviews were analysed. In addition, open and closed-ended questions carried out with fifty-two respondents from tourism business owners and key player stakeholders in Bethlehem’s tourism sector. The findings show that the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in that all Bethlehem’s tourism sector and sub-sectors suffered from the COVID-19 pandemic, however, the worst affected sub-sectors are souvenir stores and accommodation, while the least affected industry in the tourist restaurants sub-sector. The pandemic has resulted in massive job losses in Bethlehem. Bethlehem’s tourism sector has implemented pay cuts and laying off workers as a way of mitigating loss of revenue resulting from the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. Finally, this research provides academic as well as managerial implications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3535-3551
Number of pages17
JournalCurrent Issues in Tourism
Issue number24
Publication statusPublished - 10 Feb 2021


  • Bethlehem
  • Covid-19
  • accommodation
  • impacts
  • souvenir stores
  • tourism sector


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