European tourism demand stability in spite of shaky world economy

Published on : Saturday, November 16, 2019

According to the European Travel Commission’s (ETC) recent quarterly report “European Tourism – Trends & Prospects” for Q3 2019, the demand of European tourism remains in positive territory, albeit with a sluggish rate in expansion in comparison to the last two years. Even though external risks are failing to dispel, destinations carry on growing at a modest pace and the overarching regional outlook remains positive (3-4% in international tourist arrivals in 2019).


Of particular interest in Q3 is that Montenegro maintained its constant growth momentum at 18% as it greeted with open arms an elevated influx of Western European holidaymakers, as the depreciation of the lira continued to play the important role in the tourism performance of Turkey with an equally impressive 15% increase in tourist arrivals.


On the other hand, in Iceland (-14%), the strong krona and the fall down of Wow Air are among the prime factors which have contributed behind the drop in arrival numbers as the destination is hoped to record a downturn this year for the first time since 2010. Industry experts are anticipating that return to normal growth levels (4-5% annually) and that this decline will actually make room for a more sustainable and inclusive tourism sector in Iceland.


Speaking following the launch of the report, Eduardo Santander, ETC Executive Director said: “this latest report highlights that travel demand in Europe is in a good place, with steady increases in tourism numbers across the board. Despite very real challenges, such as the looming threat of a ‘no deal’ Brexit, and the collapse of several airlines, European destinations continue to post healthy rates of arrivals, which of course is to be welcomed. Meanwhile, European tourism needs to focus on developing long-term sustainable management solutions to enable tourism to flourish, rather than just merely grow.”


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