Assessing the COVID-19 Pandemic impact on the Sustainability of the Tourism Economy: (Case Study: Tourism Target Villages of Zanjan Province, Iran)

Document Type : Research Paper


1 MSc Student, Department of Geography, Faculty of Humanities, Zanjan University, Zanjan, Iran.

2 Associate Professor, Department of Geography, Faculty of Humanities, University of Zanjan, Zanjan, Iran.

3 Assistant Professor, Department of Geography, Faculty of Humanities, Zanjan University, Zanjan, Iran.


Purpose: The present study aims to assess the COVID-19 pandemic on the second home economics in the tourism target villages of Zanjan in northwest Iran.
Methods: The current research is applied and descriptive-analytic, using a questionnaire for the understudied villages. The statistical population includes the tourism target villages of Zanjan province. Due to the limitation of time and cost, the spread of Coronavirus, etc., only one sample from each region was selected for a comprehensive study. Based on the Cochran formula (assuming p and q equal 0.5), 327 out of 2690 households of sample villages s were selected, and the questionnaire was r distributed using simple random sampling.. As some families were uncooperative with us due to the COVID-19 outbreak, 270 questionnaires were completed for the statistical analysis.
Results: The results of the one-sample t-test demonstrated that the indicators of "influence on the sustainability of tourism activities" (2.11) and "influence on income ad its diversity in tourism sectors" (2.28), respectively, took the highest negative impacts from the spread of the COVID-19. The results of the retrospective analysis of the pre-and post-COVID-19 pandemic periods showed that the indicators of "influence on non-monetary indicators of household welfare" (-14.230), "job opportunities in tourism" (-14.202), and "income and its diversity in the tourism sector" (-14.143), respectively, indicates the biggest difference in the two understudied periods from the respondent's point of view. The results of the regression model demonstrated that, in total, the dimensions of tourism economy sustainability; and tourism sustainability had an overall impact of 0.428 and 0.417 on second homes based- tourism economy in the studied villages, respectively.
Conclusion: The results revealed that despite the negative impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak on job opportunities, income, household welfare, and the sustainability of tourism activities, its positive effects on investment indicators, tourism infrastructure, and attracting capital investments outside the village, such as landscaping, improving access and communication, and creating parking and rest areas near attractions in addition to creating and developing second homes shouldn't be ignored.