Croatia Working to Attract More Italian Tourists

Total Croatia News

ZAGREB, January 20, 2018 – Croatia is regarded by Italians as a stable and safe tourist destination and it has all comparative advantages to achieve positive results from this traditionally important market, the Ministry of Tourism and the Croatian Tourist Board (HTZ) say.

Tourism Minister Gari Cappelli visited Rome earlier this week to attend the third meeting of the coordinating committee of Croatian and Italian government ministers, and took the opportunity to discuss tourism cooperation between the two countries.

The interest of Italians in spending their holidays in Croatia remains stable, as shown by recent well-attended business workshops for Croatian and Italian tourism partners in Italy, but more will be known after Italy’s biggest international travel show, BIT in Milan, due to take place in mid-February.

Italians are inclined to making last-minute bookings and, because of the vicinity of Croatia, they more often arrange their holidays privately rather than through travel agencies, HTZ Director Kristjan Staničić said. He said that the focus of this year’s advertising campaign would also be on regions of southern and central Italy from where fewer tourists come to Croatia than from northern parts of the country.

That’s why the HTZ plans to open its office in Rome this year and to focus its advertising campaign on the post-summer season and on Italy’s wealthiest regions, Lombardy and Piedmont, he added.

Staničić said that new flight services were being introduced. The Volotea low-cost airline has announced new flights from Milan to Dubrovnik and Split as of May, and it will also launch its first flight services from Bergamo to Dubrovnik and Split and from Bari to Dubrovnik as of June.

Last year, 1.1 million Italian tourists visited Croatia, 2% more than in 2016, and they generated 5 million bed nights, similarly to the year before. Staničić said that these figures could be higher this year.

Staničić, however, noted that Italians in general were not inclined to spending their holidays abroad. According to the latest Italian figures, in 2016 nearly 80% of Italians spent their holidays in their own country, 17% travelled abroad, while the rest spent their holidays partly at home and partly abroad.

“Given a long period of economic and political crises in Italy, we are pleased with the results of our tourist trade with it,” said Viviana Vukelić, the director of the HTZ office in Milan.

Vukelić said that Italians like to travel to France, the United States, Spain, Austria and Croatia. Sixty-four percent of Italians who visit Croatia come from northern Italy, 18.4% come from central parts of the country, 14% from the south and about 3% from the islands. Given that Istria and the Kvarner region are close to northern Italy, most of Italians come by car, but ferry and flight services would certainly be welcome for those coming from southern Italy, she said.


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