ZAGREB, Oct 7, 2020 – Croatian hoteliers expect this year’s revenues to drop 25-75% due to the COVID pandemic and half believe recovery will take two or more years, with holiday tourism expected to recover faster and convention tourism much slower, a director in the Horwath HTL consulting company says.
Such findings come from the company’s analysis of the so-called COVID year in which the pandemic has affected every industry around the world, notably tourism.
Sinisa Topalovic says the forecasts for 2021 and the growth of the global GDP are somewhat encouraging, but that recovery by country will depend and be faster if they are industrially strong, while being harder and slower in those focused on services such as Croatia.
Global and country forecasts say consumption is expected to recover in 12 to 24 months, which is a very long time, notably in tourism, which has been globally affected by the pandemic, from air travel to the hotel industry, which are recording drops in revenues from 60% to 80%, and they will not recover soon, says Topalovic.
Croatia at EU’s bottom in hotel occupancy but near the top in prices
In such circumstances, Croatia managed to generate above-average results when compared with the competition in the first eight months of the year, about 40% of last year’s turnover, but next year could be at least 10 to 20 percentage points better, also thanks to this year’s experience, according to a Horwath HTL analysis.
Croatia’s average hotel occupancy rate in the first eight months of this year was 24%, ranking it at the bottom of the EU, but in terms of prices it ranks relatively high because during the short summer holiday season Croatian hoteliers managed to keep relatively good prices, which is good given that after being lowered due to the 2008-09 crisis, they took a long time to recover, says Topalovic.
Three markets saved the season
The analysis shows that only three markets, of the more than 70 from which tourists came to Croatia in the past, saved this year’s season, generating up to 60% of the total turnover – Germany, Croatia, and Slovenia.
Croatian tourists “gave life to numerous destinations” and their arrivals and overnights registered the smallest decreases from the record year 2019, the analysis says.