Document Type



Institute for Tourism and Recreation Research

Publication Date



Social and Behavioral Sciences


The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has been detrimental for both the health and the economy of Montanans and the entire globe. Many of Montana businesses, especially the travel-related businesses, were shut down from mid-March to the end of May. All non-essential travel stopped. The impact on businesses was felt statewide. This report focuses on the open-ended responses within the third round of business surveys conducted by the Institute for Tourism and Recreation Research (ITRR) at the University of Montana. The survey was conducted in the height of Montana’s shut-down to capture the thoughts and concerns of business owners in the travel industry. Of the 440 survey respondents, the majority say this will be a long, slow recovery and nearly half of the businesses say they cannot last over 6 months if this continues. Cutting costs, cutting hours and laying off employees was the current response to staying afloat. As businesses think about re-opening, it is all about keeping employees and customers safe by adopting new cleaning practices and adjusting how their business operates.


© 2020 ITRR