Sunset over the Mekong river in Luang Prabang, Laos. The town should be at its busiest at this time of year, but international tourists cannot enter the country because of the global Covid-19 pandemic. Jobs have been lost and businesses closed, but domestic visitors should help the tourist trade survive. Photo: Steve Thomas Sunset over the Mekong river in Luang Prabang, Laos. The town should be at its busiest at this time of year, but international tourists cannot enter the country because of the global Covid-19 pandemic. Jobs have been lost and businesses closed, but domestic visitors should help the tourist trade survive. Photo: Steve Thomas
Sunset over the Mekong river in Luang Prabang, Laos. The town should be at its busiest at this time of year, but international tourists cannot enter the country because of the global Covid-19 pandemic. Jobs have been lost and businesses closed, but domestic visitors should help the tourist trade survive. Photo: Steve Thomas

‘Luang Prabang is dead’; in jewel of Laos tourism jobs have gone, businesses have closed, and the future looks uncertain – but a lot quieter

  • With the Southeast Asian country’s international borders closed for the foreseeable future due to Covid-19, some businesses are digging in, others giving up
  • Tourism-dependent Luang Prabang’s streets are empty, but operators see hope in a pivot to domestic visitors, who responded well to a novel Christmas promotion

Topic |   Coronavirus pandemic
Sunset over the Mekong river in Luang Prabang, Laos. The town should be at its busiest at this time of year, but international tourists cannot enter the country because of the global Covid-19 pandemic. Jobs have been lost and businesses closed, but domestic visitors should help the tourist trade survive. Photo: Steve Thomas Sunset over the Mekong river in Luang Prabang, Laos. The town should be at its busiest at this time of year, but international tourists cannot enter the country because of the global Covid-19 pandemic. Jobs have been lost and businesses closed, but domestic visitors should help the tourist trade survive. Photo: Steve Thomas
Sunset over the Mekong river in Luang Prabang, Laos. The town should be at its busiest at this time of year, but international tourists cannot enter the country because of the global Covid-19 pandemic. Jobs have been lost and businesses closed, but domestic visitors should help the tourist trade survive. Photo: Steve Thomas
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