The terrorist attacks affiliated to ISIS in Paris, the subsequent police sieges in Brussels as well as the shooting down of a Russian commercial airliner over Egypt and the Mali hotel attack have left tourism experts to ask: What now constitutes a safe tourist destination?
Read: Travel Doc answers your questions
Professor Melville Saayman, director of the research unit TREES
(Tourism Research in Economic Environs and Society) at the Potchefstroom
Campus of the North-West University says "The ISIS attacks have been
horrific and all indications are that they are not likely to stop in the
Countries engaging ISIS on the battlefront
as well as countries condemning the Islamic State are painting
themselves and their civilians, as targets for retribution.
Countries at risk of terrorist attacks
According to a map by the Express, some of the most common tourist hotspots, including France, Spain, and Turkey, are high risk areas for terror attack.
Germany and the UK also face some threat.
Have a look at the map to see which areas are most at risk:
Are any countries safe from attack?
"Research has shown that one of the dominant factors that contribute to the choosing of a tourism destination is a country’s safety and stability."
As the map indicates, a country, such as France, that has most recently suffered an attack, is considered a greater risk. Countries, such as Germany, with a high number of refugees are also more at risk of terrorist action and therefore not the most recommended holiday destination.
According to Saayman, the tourism industry will have to keep it's ear on the ground and inform travelers as the risk for certain countries change. He also advises tourists to consult social media and use it as a guide when considering a holiday destination.
"Thanks to mass media, especially social media, we are living in a world where the fragility of the fabric that holds us together are more evident than ever. We see that when citizens lash out in frustration over attacks in other countries." says Saayman.
12 bad holiday ideas
Five safe holiday tips
How to handle a medical emergency these holidays