According to the Croatian National Tourist Board, of the total number of guests currently staying in Croatia, 30 thousand are foreign visitors. Most tourists were recorded in Istria and Kvarner, followed by Split-Dalmatia, Dubrovnik-Neretva, and Zadar counties, Jutarnji List.
Twenty-seven thousand guests were registered in hotels, which is a significant increase compared to January 2021, when only five thousand stayed in hotels on the same day.
However, the figures show that we are still behind in data from the beginning of 2020 (before the pandemic) when about 60,000 tourists stayed in Croatia for the New Year holidays.
When it comes to specific tourist destinations, Zagreb, Opatija, Dubrovnik, Poreč, and Split benefited the most from New Year’s celebrations. Domestic tourists, followed by Germans, Slovenes, and Austrians, were the most numerous in these destinations.
It is also commendable that this New Year’s holiday was welcomed by more foreign than domestic tourists, while last year the situation was reversed: out of a total of 15 thousand guests, 11 thousand were domestic guests, which shows that foreign markets are still traveling more this winter than during 2021.
As the Split-Dalmatia County Tourist Board director Joško Stella told Jutarnji List, December 2021 was significantly better than last year but still less than the pre-pandemic results of 2019, and this was seen on New Year’s Eve.
“We are satisfied, we had significantly more NYE receptions in the cities than last year, and there were more hotels, so logically there were more guests.
Most of the guests are from the German market, but we also had visitors from the United States and the United Kingdom, although we can’t talk about large numbers,” Stella said.
New Year’s data inspire hope that in 2022 the recovery of the tourism sector could continue, for which the Croatian Tourist Board predicted that the year could end at 90 percent of the pre-pandemic 2019. Accordingly, the CNTB announced new and intensive promotional campaigns and actions in this regard. In addition, it was decided that the umbrella marketing agency would open a branch in Kyiv as the Ukrainian market brought excellent results in 2021.
This is supported by the financial data for the first nine months of 2021, according to which revenues from foreign tourists amounted to 8 billion and 268 million euros, which is a 90 percent increase over the same period, i.e., the first nine months of 2020, which is one of the worst tourist years so far.
Revenue that year was about 4.4 billion euros, or 3 billion and 929 million euros less.
However, most interesting is that in the pandemic year, Croatia managed to make the best financial result recorded so far in the main season.
According to the Ministry of Tourism, in the third quarter, i.e., in July, August, and September, the income of foreign tourists amounted to 6 billion and 775 million euros, which is a 100 percent increase compared to the same period in 2020, or 3 billion and 386 million euros more.
Compared to the pre-pandemic 2019, the growth was two percent, i.e., 148 million euros more in revenue, in the circumstances of the not very successful vaccination process. Croatia still lags behind other European countries.
However, the data should be taken with a grain of salt because it is likely that many of our competing tourist countries that have recorded more significant declines in traffic than Croatia over the past two years will try to take advantage of the 2022 season.
Namely, Greece and Turkey could offer significantly lower prices to the market.
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