Split Will be a Hit Again this Year, though Experts Warn of One Serious Problem

Daniela Rogulj

Preparations for the upcoming season are already nearing completion, and despite the media insights and announcements of a worse season due to last-minute bookings and Brexit, but also the new boom of Spain and Greece who are daring to offer competitive prices, Split tourist workers are optimistic, reports Splitski Dnevnik on March 25, 2019. 

Anyone who has already placed their apartments in the queue can breathe a sigh of relief, for yet another fruitful summer awaits us. This optimism is certainly given by the Split Tourist Board data, which shows that in the first two months of 2019, the city recorded an increase of 25 percent in arrivals and overnight stays.

There was considerable interest at this year’s ITB Berlin, which showcased the surrounding areas of Split to tourists, resulting in better-equipped apartments outside the city on offer this year. At the same time, the season was extended and now we can freely say that the only break in the year is from November 1 to March 1.

However, the trend of last-minute reservations this year clearly shows that we need to keep an eye on manipulating prices and quality, but also that a significant price increase in the heart of the season is not the best choice if we want sustainable and long-lasting tourism.

“More and more guests prefer booking last minute. Realizing that they can choose accommodation and that the offer, especially in our country, is substantial, they do not rush with reservations, so I am confident that all private renters will reach capacity more or less by the summer,” says the president of the Family Tourism Community Section Martina Nimac Kalcin.

The competition is increasing year after year, though this has not affected the prices of apartments thus far. What it changes is the quality for the price. This is the most common problem for renters with three-star apartments, who do not have any added value, such as a swimming pool. Such apartments are located mostly in the outermost parts of the city and beyond.

“Guests would rather choose the center of Split than a suburb, but this does not apply, for example, to Podstrana, because it is already a kind of Riviera. There, guests holiday for seven or more days, because they are not the city break guests in Split who stay however many days. But there are differences as well. One is being the first row of houses to the sea, where tourists have the beach at their fingertips, and there are quite a few other places above the Adriatic highway,” said Nimac Kalcina.

It is these landlords who have to pay attention to every detail of their offer, and the increase in lump sums, some of which could be discouraging. Because when all the costs and earnings are counted, it may be more worthwhile to rent to the tenants monthly.

Such an option should be in the tourist offer because the number of apartments is at the maximum. In recent years, the capacity of apartments has risen by 20 percent, though the number of guests remained relatively the same.

“There is a problem that will be even more pronounced this year because more apartments will be on the market, I am sure, at least 10 percent. Then the nerves grow, prices fall, they start talking about the bad season, and so on. It’s not a bad season, but the supply has grown on the demand,” says Tomislav Fain, in his third year as the president of the National Association of Croatian Travel Agencies.

To cope with a similar situation, Barcelona has banned the opening of new apartments, though such rigorous moves will not happen in Croatia.

To read more about travel in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page


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