Published on : Monday, May 3, 2021
Representatives of Prague Airport, CzechTourism and Prague City Tourism have recently signed a Memorandum on a long-term joint approach to the resumption and expansion of inbound tourism to Prague and the Czech Republic. The parties involved see tourism as one of the preconditions for both economic recovery post the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent economic growth. The co-operation also seeks to promote the development and support of sustainable tourism, which will contribute to the positive development of Prague and other regions of the Czech Republic without negatively interfering with everyday life in tourist-exposed places, such as the capital city centre.
The Memorandum on joint support of inbound tourism was signed by Hana Trestíkova, Councillor for Culture and Tourism, representing the Capital City of Prague, Vaclav Rehor, Chairman of the Prague Airport Board of Directors, Jan Herget, Director of the CzechTourism Agency, and Frantisek Cipro, Chairman of the Prague City Tourism Board of Directors. The key precondition for the implementation of the agreed co-operation and joint activities is a good epidemiological situation and a gradual return to normal social life. The agreed co-operation will comprise mainly marketing support of Prague and the Czech Republic in selected foreign source markets.
Among other activities, there is the planned support for air carriers with direct connections to Prague from selected markets, alongside joint participations in professional conferences and trade fairs, which contribute to the development of tourism. Last but not least, sharing experiences and procedures as well as the implementation of synergies and tools the individual organisations use to develop their activities and fulfil their goals will also be pursued. The Memorandum on cooperation in the field of inbound tourism support was signed for the next three years and is a direct follow-up to the Memorandum signed in 2018, which expired at the end of last year.
Hana Trestikova, Councillor of the Capital City of Prague for Culture and Tourism, said in a statement that tourism and related industries are by far the most affected by the long-lasting COVID-19 crisis. She mentioned that she believes with the co-operation with CzechTourism and Prague Airport, Prague will be able to reverse the unfavourable trend once the situation allows. She shared that authorities want to revive tourism as quickly as possible and attract a cultured and more solvent clientele to Prague and other cities in the Czech Republic to ensure the resumed tourism is sustainable. Vaclav Rehor, Chairman of the Prague Airport Board of Directors added that the resumption and development of air connections with Prague depend primarily on inbound tourism, which accounts for approximately 70 percent of Prague Airport’s operations. He mentioned that it is important to support, among other things, the demand for trips to Prague, which is the biggest attraction for foreign tourists.
He shared that only on the basis of strong demand, airlines will launch new flights, from which the Czechs will benefit, too and hence co-operation with CzechTourism, Prague City Tourism and the capital city of Prague is immensely important. He mentioned that alongside the general resumption of air connections, aparticular goal of Prague Airport is the development of new long-haul routes in the coming years. According to Jan Herget, Director of the CzechTourism Agency said tourism is an important part of the economy, accounting for almost three percent of GDP. He shared that in 2019 tourism generated CZK 355 billion and provided jobs to almost a quarter of a million people in the Czech Republic. He mentioned that after the pandemic subsides, the key to tourism recovery is, alongside the setting of uniform travel rules, for example in the form of COVID passes, the resumption of air connections, predominantly direct routes from lucrative markets.
He stated that for this reason, the foreign representations maintain a good starting position via their B2B and B2C activities to get a head start on the undoubtedly tough competition expected as the pandemic subsides and once it becomes possible, they are ready to help negotiate direct flights and immediately address tourists from the respective markets, offering them the best travel experience in the Czech Republic. Frantisek Cipro, Chairman of the Prague City Tourism Agency, also added that he sees the signing of the Memorandum as another step towards fulfilling the new inbound tourism strategy in Prague. He shared that the Memorandum will attract a cultured clientele to Prague, i.e. travellers with goals other than to get drunk cheaply in the capital. He mentioned that authorities do not want the future tourism to be concentrated only in the historical city centre and therefore, already creating attractive tourist routes outside the historical heart of Prague.