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Expectations for successful tourist season despite belated summer and rising prices

Photo: BGNES -library

The tourism industry in Bulgaria expects a better summer season, compared to 2022, as there are prospects of reaching the levels of the pre-pandemic 2019. Revenues of at least 2.3 million euros are expected in the sector. Judging by the early bookings, there is increased interest in the country and signs for a return to some markets. "There are prerequisites for a successful season, but not the one we should have, i.e. - sustainable and long-term one. The problem is that the active tourist season in this country is quite short and this is what has been bothering us for years," tourism expert Konstantin Zankov told Radio Bulgaria:

"This year, apart from the European markets, which are the main ones for us, we have a rise in the number of tourists from Israel and Great Britain. However, there is decline in the German market. We lost it during the pandemic. Back then we tried to restore it with some measures for charter flights and payment per seat but this didn't work as the program stopped as soon as it started. The German market is very important for us. It is true that we expect more German tourists this summer but we are far from the pre-pandemic levels. The industry will try to compensate for this outflow with attracting tourists from other European countries, but it is important for the sector to fully regain its positions on the German market."

Over 2 million Bulgarians will choose to vacation at the Bulgarian Black Sea coast, the Ministry of Tourism forecasts. The cold spring and the belated summer, however, have had their effect. People are still undecided about their summer vacation or when to book it:

"The beginning of the season will not be strong. We can see that when it's cold and rainy, people don't think about the sea. It is a distant thought for them, although we are at the start of the summer season. This definitely shows that there will be lower occupancy in June. But as the weather improves, the number of bookings is expected to rise, which will naturally have a positive impact in the months of July and August," Konstantin Zankov says.

It turns out that galloping inflation, political uncertainty and the war raging nearby are not able to stop the dream of holiday by the waves. And yet, how much more expensive will vacation at the Bulgarian Black Sea coast be this summer?

"Speaking about individual segments and resorts, hotels and seasons, there is a rise in prices between 15 and 27-28 percent. But it depends on the hotel, whether the stay is early, late or in peak season and what the price includes. The guest has the opportunity to book a vacation with the same parameters but simply reschedule their vacation by the sea by a few days. Price hikes are observed everywhere. In Greece, the price rise is much more serious, as well as in Turkey. In Bulgaria, this also affects the number of overnight stays. For example, if last year a vacationer had an average of 7 nights in the high season, now they can book 6 in this season or change the parameters of the vacation," Konstantin Zankov said in conclusion.

English: Al. Markov

Photos: BGNES - archive

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