Tourism experts claim Croatia’s massive growth boom was simply not normal, nor was it something that should have been expected this year.
Several days ago we wrote about Croatia’s tourism growth, last year’s incredible boom, and how its apparent stagnation this year might potentially be a positive thing when looking at the long-term situation.
As Josip Bohutinski/VL/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 16th of August, 2018, tourism experts have warned that Croatia should now forget about the double-digit tourism growth dream the country harboured until recently, simply because this growth trend that has been happening in Croatia’s tourism sector over the last few years has simply not been normal.
Croatia recorded a 10.5% increase in tourist arrivals in July last year in comparison to the same month of 2016. July this year is quite another story, with almost the same number of tourists coming to Croatia as July 2017. The same story has been repeated once again in August this year, according to a report from Večernji list.
Of course, this same level last year saw Croatia achieve incredible, historical tourist results – the number of arrivals stood at a massive 18.5 million, an increase of 13 percent when compared to 2016. Last year, the country also achieved a total of 102 million realised overnight stays, 12 percent more than the previous year. However, tourism experts have said, as previously mentioned, that the country would do better in letting go of such notions repeating themselves this year, as what has been going on with Croatia’s enormous tourism growth simply hasn’t been a reflection of any sort of normality.
The president of the Uniline tourist company, Boris Žgomba, stated that in the part of the tourist year we’ve seen so far in 2018, there has indeed been some growth, though it hasn’t really been anything to write home about. That growth stopped in July because the same result was achieved in the same month last year. Žgomba said that according to the current data, a minus of about one percent has been recorded for this August, but it is assumed that the whole month will more or less be at the same level as last year, or with about one to two percent growth.
”That [this data] says that in the two main tourist months, there has been a definite absence of the hyper-demand we’ve seen in previous years when there were two to three queries for just one bed. Such huge demand wasn’t sustainable in the long run,” explained Žgomba, adding that we are now entering the period in which we have to do and offer much, much more to each tourist.
Asked whether or not Croatia’s price hikes have been the reason for tourists turning elsewhere, Žgomba said that the prices are discretionary to private entities who offer such tourist oriented services and that those who raised prices on the basis of last year’s hyper-demand were some sort of heroes to some, but those who continued with those same prices this year corrected their prices when they felt the effects of the lessening demand to better suit the new situation in which they find themselves.