North Korea’s antics are having an effect on the Olympics. With less than three months before the Winter Olympics open in Pyeongchang, South Korea, the Games are struggling to draw visitors from home and abroad, largely because of fears about the secretive and unpredictable neighbor to the North just 50 miles away.
As of November 16, organizers say they’ve hit just 41% of their sales target of 1.06 million tickets, with sales in South Korea even weaker than those by international tourists, according to USA Today. Anbritt Stengele, the founder of Sports Traveler, a Chicago-based travel agency, said she’s never seen such a sluggish market.
“The interest level is very low for this Olympics,” said Stengele. “We had Sochi (Russia) in 2014, and that interest level was lower than Vancouver (in 2010). But this one is even lower than Sochi. I would just classify it as extremely light interest. Sales have been stagnant.” She and other travel agents say there are a few factors that are affecting interest in the Winter Games, and a good many are from fears about North Korea aggression.
Stengele said North Korea is a big factor, as global tensions are running high over threats exchanged by President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. Kim has conducted a record number of ballistic missile tests this year, as well as a test of its most powerful nuclear weapon to date. Both leaders have threatened to annihilate the others’ country if they order a first strike.
North Korea also has a massive artillery aimed directly at South Korea, and that’s unsettling to travelers who wish to see the games. Stengele also said she’s heard concerns about whether travel insurance will cover cancellations in the event of a “disruption” by North Korea and the lack of accommodation options such as name-brand international hotel chains at the venue locations.
It isn’t just American tourists who are cutting their travels to South Korea because of fears that the chubby dictator in North Korea could start launching missiles anytime. South Korea has been suffering from a massive drop in visitors from China, in large part because of the deployment of a U.S. anti-missile defense system last May that has angered the communist government in Beijing
Yeah, nothing spell world unity like a full-on artillery barrage or nukes melting the ‘slopes’. <=== real bad pun that.
On the one hand, you have over the last many years concerns about places with big crowds and a terrorist attack, then invite a BIG crowd from all over the world to a place that has hundreds of missals pointed at you. What could go wrong?
On the other hand you have over 100 countries there. How would you like 100 countries to be mad at you for killing people from there? Would you survive very long? Would you take that chance that they wouldn’t all agree to drop 5000 or more bombs on your country and wipe it off the map?
i would like to make a prediction: Kim Jung unstable aint gonna do jack squat without Denis Rodman
Kim Jung might wear one of those fake noses with eyeglasses and sneak in to grab some fresh women who dont have parasites.
Don’t scare the Tares. We don’t want them to prep. We want them to be totally unprepared. Let them spend their money on a wide screen to watch porn and sports. If they can’t see by now . They are the enemy. Tell them everything will be just fine and the government will take care of them. This is all about soddom and Gomorrah and the burning of the Tares . Don’t go against Gods will. Regardless of family or friends. Hard choices?
Definitely a concern as SK is tied at the hip to the USA. Regardless of other nations i wouldnt be at all surprised if things go awry.
i hope the hold the biathalon in the demiliterized zone and use real targets?
Kim Jung should sponser his own olympic event called “demilitarized zone dash”
If they can shut down the olympics . A lot of inheritance billionaires won’t make as much money. So sad. Buts what’s really sad is all those kids who worked their asses off to be great. Whatever that means. Will get sidelined. Billionaires making more money off kids . That’s probably not bad for the kids.Pawns in a chess game? Jimmy Carter banned the olympics for a lot of kids. Impotence? Ugly old rich people. The Tares will burn. Soon?
I would not go if the shit was free – I am not a fan of those damn filthy, dog eating chink, gook types.
And with our obamacare cost and other things like food hitting all time highs who has extra money to travel?
Nailbanger, even without all of Porky’s BS, why choose SK for the games in the first place? When the 2014 games took place I Sochi, the sand fleas were threatening to launch attacks there. Putin supposedly had an airborne division surrounding the entire city to try to keep the sand fleas out. Don’t be surprised if the games get cancelled because of Porky’s BS. It’s the neocons pushing this shit, not Trump.
It has nothing to do with terrorism, but I have avoided large crowds most my life. I think only fools gather in great groups that are easy to attack and hard to escape from. I guess that is why I don’t
live in a city. Metro Seoul has 25+ million people!
You would be nuts to go there with the threat that they face.
Metro Seoul is ~233 sq miles for 25+ million people, my home is ~4,000 sq miles for about 190,000 people and I think that is too crowded. I can disappear in my area, those poor people stuffed in that Korean Metro area are just cannon fodder.
I can go out my front door and walk 15 minutes almost any direction and be in the sticks, i like it that way, my neighbors are mostly good folks, few libtards but i treat em like lepers so dont have anything to do with em
Agree: my mother (who lived through the war) always warned against crowds. Crowds are mindless and you do not stand a chance when a crowd panics.
I suspect nothing will happen during the Olympics since most of what is happening in Korea is about getting US defence contracts signed. Notice how there is always an episode or wave of attacks and then – tah, dah! – they go quiet for a long time? That’s because the government contracts were signed and everyone is happy with their cash for the next six months. The greed of the military industrial complex is boundless. Remember, the biggest guzzler of gas and oil on the planet is the US military.
the experts are predicting another upsurge in missile launching and it’s looking like NK has the nuke testing facility snafu cured – could mean some kind of coalition action lead by the US …
in 3 months the tension could be soooo freaking bad that not only will the games be canceled but foreigners will be hotfooting out of the country ….
It would be a shame if anything happened to Seoul or any of South Korea. It is a beautiful country.