Croatian Hotels Trying to Attract Seasonal Workers

Total Croatia News

Shortage of seasonal workers means that hotel owners have to invest to attract the best ones.

In their battle for high-quality seasonal workers, some of Croatia’s tourism companies have started investing more in trying to attract them. This can best be seen in their accommodation facilities: larger hotel companies understand the need to ensure seasonal employees accommodation in their own facilities free of charge, in addition to meals and activities that will enable them to rest after a long day, reports Jutarnji List on February 28, 2017.

Hotel entrepreneur Jako Andabak has perhaps done more than others and is currently constructing the first hotel built specifically for employees, a three-star facility in which about 300 seasonal workers will live in double rooms with bathrooms and will also have at their disposal common areas for relaxation.

“In addition to our 1.6 million-euro hotel in Zadvarje, employees at all destinations have food and accommodation provided. We also have accommodation facilities for them in Starigrad Paklenica, Brela and Bol. In Bol, we will soon start building a new facility for employees, and under consideration is a project of upgrading the facility in Starigrad Paklenica”, said Bluesun Hotels, adding that seasonal workers also receive special bonuses according to the collective agreement and can also receive special supplemental at the end of the tourist season.

Valamar has also decided to upgrade accommodation facilities for its employees this year. The company is building so-called Valamar Staff Residences, two of which will open this year on the island of Krk and in Rabac, with Dubrovnik following next year. Seasonal workers will live in single and double rooms, with common areas having everything they need for entertainment – TV sets, DVD players, PlayStations and board games.

“The rooms are modern and employees have 29 percent higher salaries than the sector average, as well as 17 award programmes and the possibility of entering the Valamar +3 programme, which guarantees permanent seasonal employees nine months of work a year, salary contributions and income being paid for the whole year, and a guarantee to work for the next three seasons”, explained Valamar.

Starting from this year, free accommodation will also be provided for the staff of Istraturist and Plava Laguna, but just for those who manage to get a bed in a facility owned by the company. Others will have to look for accommodation in private apartments, but will receive a partial Christmas bonus, special salary supplemental in July and August, and various other bonuses. “We have made investments in improving the quality of accommodation facilities for employees. Seasonal workers who do not have accommodation otherwise can be provided free accommodation and meals in our facilities”, said Istraturist.

President of the Trade Union of Tourism and Services Eduard Andrić confirmed that hoteliers are increasingly realizing that they need to invest in order to retain high-quality staff. “One way is renovation and construction of accommodation facilities so that workers are not forced to live in private facilities. However, there are still many problems, especially for those companies which have not started looking for employees on time”, said Andrić.

One of better examples is Jadranka from Lošinj. The company explains that it provides accommodation and meals for employees “without reduction of wages”, and also refunds the cost of obligatory health exam and transportation.

However, companies do not want to reveal their perhaps weakest point – the average wage of seasonal workers, which are believed in general to be about 15 percent lower than the average salary in Croatia.


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