According to the report, a significant majority of European destinations registered positive growth in the pre-summer months proving the resilience of the sector and underlining its significance as a contributor to the region’s on-going-economic recovery.
Best performers of Q2 are Iceland (+30%), Montenegro (+19%) and Romania (+16%) experiencing a substantial growth in the number of international tourist arrivals. Following are Ireland (+14%), Croatia (+14%), Slovenia (+10%) Serbia and Cyprus (both +10%) also reporting double-digit increases. Among Europe’s most popular destinations, Germany (+5%), Spain (+4%), Italy (+4%) and the UK (+3%) saw healthy growth with optimism set towards the peak travel season.
“The possibility that Greece might be forced to leave the Eurozone remains a key risk, with discussions between Greece and its creditors still ongoing at the time of writing”, the ETC notes in its report.
“Nevertheless, hotels data for Athens remains robust suggesting that some confidence in the Greek economic growth remained during the first half of the year.”
The ETC said it will continue to monitor Greek performance closely in the coming weeks and months.
Numbers from Russia shrink
As it is noted in the report, the Russian economy continues to face difficulties to level off and it is still expected to see a deep backdrop in 2015. A decrease in oil prices and the consequent plunge in the Rubble against the Euro are expected to hit European tourism destinations in 2015 while international sections have already affected on the tourist industry.
“Foreign travel has become costly for Russian tourists with traditional hot-spot destinations being the most affected”, the ETC noteed.
Concluding its report, the ETC underlined that in order to ensure Europe’s leading position as the #1 tourist destination worldwide amid a challenging and uncertain socio-economic environment, European tourism organisations must foster sustainable product development and promotion encouraging the diversity of products and experiences offered by the destination at a pan-European level.