During the past two decades, the Southeast Asian region has experienced a range of major crises. Service industries such as tourism and the marginal and migrant laborers who work in them have usually been at the sharp end of these testing events, from natural and environmental disasters, epidemics and pandemics, global financial slumps, terrorism, and political conflict. The latest challenge is the “Novel Coronavirus” (Covid-19/SARS-CoV-2) pandemic. It has already had serious consequences for Southeast Asia and its tourism development and these will continue for the foreseeable future. Since the SARS epidemic of 2002-2004, Southeast Asian economies have become integrated increasingly into those of East Asia (China, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong). This paper examines one of the most significant current crises, Covid-19, and its consequences for Southeast Asia, its tourism industry, and its workers, comparing experiences across the region, and the issues raised by the over-dependence of some countries on East Asia. In research on crises, the main focus has been on dramatic, unpredictable natural disasters, and human-generated global economic downturns. Not so much attention has been devoted to disease and contagion, which has both natural and socio-cultural dimensions in origins and effects, and which, in the case of Covid-19, evoke a pre-crisis period of normality, a liminal transition or “meantime” and a post-crisis “new normality.” The transition is not straightforward; in many countries, it operates as a set of serial lockdowns and restrictions, and to predict an uncertain future remains difficult.