Tuesday, 17 August 2021

German Tourists in Croatia Expected for At Least Another 3 Weeks

August 17, 2021 - German tourists in Croatia, especially those coming from Bavaria and Baden-Württemberg, are expected to holiday in the country for at least another 3 weeks. 

Traditionally loyal German tourists came back in large numbers this season. Since the beginning of the year, almost 1.6 million German tourists have recorded more than 11 million overnight stays in Croatia, a third more than last year. They have exceeded 80 percent of the results from the best tourist year ever in Croatia. In Istria, for example, they surpassed even that record 2019 in the number of overnight stays, and about 266,000 of them are still holidaying along the coast. And that's not the end, reports Vecernji List.

The travel season has just begun in Bavaria and Baden-Württemberg, the two federal states from which most German tourists come. The school holidays, which trigger the most massive wave of travel, began in these parts of Germany only in August, and for the next two or three weeks, the Adriatic can still count on a large number of Croatia's loyal and beloved guests.

There are still about a million tourists on the Adriatic, and the number has decreased by only a few tens of thousands after the Assumption weekend. There are 840,000 foreigners, and the largest number of Germans is in Istria, where 122,000 were hosted yesterday.

"The total number of our guests dropped by about 20,000 after last weekend, and currently there are about 275,000 in Istria. In 2019, there were about thirty thousand more of them, but that is why there are 30 percent more German tourists than that year. Thus, we also have a slight increase in tourists from Poland and the Czech Republic in August, and we have been recording similar results practically since the beginning of the year. Reservations are still coming; from today’s perspective, it looks like we will have a great August and an excellent September. Of course, provided that we remain responsible and that the COVID-19 situation does not worsen in our country and Germany. These are guests who are difficult to replace with any other market," says the director of the Istrian Tourist Board, Denis Ivošević.

For now, there is no fear about German tourists. ID Riva Tours, a German tour operator specializing in travel to Croatia, says that interest in Croatia is not waning. On the contrary, places on ships cruising the Croatian Adriatic are in demand not only now for August but also for the whole of September, and the last guests could be seen off only in mid-October.

"This is a real surprise; no one dared or hoped that the season would be so successful, quite similar to 2019. With good preparation from the Croatian side, we got everything else, including the situation with competitors and major markets. Now the only thing that matters is that the hosts remain as responsible as possible. Clearly, they cannot be held accountable for guests' behavior, but they must be an example of their behavior, and irresponsible guests must be warned. Only with such an attitude do we justify what we promised at the beginning of the season, i.e., that we are a responsible and safe country," says the owner of ID Riva Tours Selimir Ognjenovic and adds that complaints and dissatisfied guests are less than expected due to the crowds that have flooded our coast in recent weeks.

Last weekend, for example, 86 percent of overnight stays were realized compared to 2019. There are now about two hundred thousand more guests than last season, which was rapidly coming to an end after the Assumption due to the spread of the infection.

Guests on the Adriatic stay longer than in previous years, and tourism is recovering faster measured by overnight stays than by the number of guests. But this is not the only positive trend that corona has spawned.

"Perhaps even more important is the change in the structure of guests. Namely, tourists come who have incomparably stronger purchasing power than those we hosted before the pandemic. For example, a holiday home for three people in the central part of Istria is now easily filled for 2,500 euros for seven days. Before the pandemic, it was certainly 300 euros cheaper. This is, along with the Germans and the growth of hotel occupancy, the biggest gain this season," says Ivošević.

In addition to the most numerous Germans, local guests did not disappoint, of whom there are still about 160,000 at sea. They are followed by Slovenes, Poles, Italians, Austrians, and Czechs. Rovinj, Vir, Poreč, Umag, Medulin, and Mali Lošinj, and Crikvenica still dominate the list of top destinations.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated travel section.

Tuesday, 17 August 2021

150% More French Tourists in Croatia, Mostly in Split and Dubrovnik

August 17, 2021 - French tourists in Croatia have recorded 230,000 arrivals this year, which is almost 150% more than last year!

In one of the most widely-read daily French newspapers, the prestigious Le Figaro, a report was published from a recent study trip organized by the Representation of the Croatian Tourist Board in France, in cooperation with Transavia airline and with the support of the Zadar County Tourist Board, revealed the director of the Croatian National Tourist Board in France, Daniela Mihalić Đurica, as reported by HRTurizam

In the article "Zadar et ses îles, bijoux méconnus de la Croatie" or "Zadar and its islands - unknown gems of Croatia," the famous French tourism specialists and journalist Ludovic Bischoff conveys his impressions of Zadar and the region and emphasizes the city's vibrant history, cultural diversity, and heritage that offers tourists many opportunities.

The text lists the best destinations to visit, suggests to readers where to stay, and in which restaurants to taste the recognizable gastronomic offer of Zadar County. Special emphasis was placed on the island of Pag and the tradition of salt production, Pag lace, but also the cultural and historical heritage of Nin and the richness of the Paklenica National Park.

"So far this year, Croatia has recorded more than 230,000 arrivals from the French market, which is almost 150% more than last year, i.e., we are talking about 52% of arrivals recorded compared to 2019. At the moment, there are about 27,000 French people in Croatia who especially prefer the Split-Dalmatia and Dubrovnik-Neretva counties and are increasingly discovering Istria. Their favorite destinations are Split and Dubrovnik, but also the island of Hvar, which currently exceeds the results from 2019 in terms of French tourist traffic by 30%. During this year's summer season, Croatia and France are connected by numerous airlines directed to the airports of Zagreb, Pula, Zadar, Split, and Dubrovnik. In addition, the French can fly to Croatia from Paris, Bordeaux, Lyon, Marseille, Nantes, Nice, Strasbourg, and Toulouse, offering more than 30 different scheduled, low-cost, and charter flights from Transavia, Volotea, Ryanair, Easyjet, Croatia Airlines, and Air France," said the director of the Croatian Tourist Board Kristjan Staničić.

In the previous part of August, we recorded about 100,000 arrivals and 380,000 overnight stays of French tourists, which is 103% more arrivals than during the comparable period of 2020, i.e., 74% of arrivals recorded in the same period in 2019.

"In the opinion of popular French Vogue, Croatia is one of the favorite summer destinations of many world stars, while one of the most popular French tourist guides Petit Fute puts special emphasis on Istria, which French guests are increasingly discovering," added Mihalić Đurica.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated travel section.

Sunday, 15 August 2021

Not Just the Coast: Osijek-Baranja County 2021 Tourism Numbers Rising

August 15, 2021 - The coast isn't the only part of Croatia that is busy this year. Osijek-Baranja County 2021 tourism numbers are rising with an increasing number of Polish tourists. 

The 2021 tourist season is not only successful on the Croatian coast. And on the continent, tourist boards are recording better results than those achieved last year, marked by numerous restrictions and measures in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic, reports HRTurizam.

According to eVisitor data, in the first seven months of this year, there was an increase in the number of overnight stays in Osijek-Baranja County by 36%. If we look at the same pre-pandemic 2019 period, this year’s results are at 70%.

This is the reason for the cautious optimism of Osijek-Baranja County tourism workers. In the Baranja area, there is an increase in the number of guests from Poland who stay for two to three days before heading to the Adriatic. They enjoy eno-gastronomy the most and are mostly from Warsaw and Krakow.

"The good news is that cruisers are moving again in the Croatian Danube region, which is an additional indicator of the sector's adaptation to restrictive business conditions and also a reason for optimism," said Ivana Jurić, director of the Osijek-Baranja County Tourist Board.

Along with good announcements, this year's support in tourism to mitigate the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic also contributes to optimism. Namely, Osijek-Baranja County, just like last year, awarded grants intended for family farms, crafts, and companies registered for accommodation activities in the County.

Grants per beneficiary amounted to HRK 40,000, a total of 21 beneficiaries responded to the call, and HRK 600,000 was spent on this grant.

"These grants aim to help our family farms, and other tourism workers overcome the pandemic time and return as soon as possible to the improvement of continental tourism, which has recorded positive trends in our county. The latest data on tourist arrivals and overnight stays speak in favor of this because the number of overnight stays is increasing compared to the last "Covid" year, and we are approaching the record numbers from 2019," said the prefect Ivan Anušić.

However, this is not the end of the Osijek-Baranja County subsidies, which provided HRK 2.62 million to the tourism sector through the Administrative Department for Tourism, Culture, and Sports in four models.

"We are still open to the Public Call for grants for the organization and participation in events until we hit the funds planned in the Budget or by October 31, 2021, at the latest," said Tatjana Roth, Head of the Administrative Department for Tourism, Culture, and Sports. 

Support is awarded for the organization and participation in events that are important for developing rural tourism and presenting the tourism potentials of the County, which promotes and represents the County as an active participant in the development of rural tourism.

Family farms, crafts, and companies registered for catering and tourist services in rural tourism, associations registered for activities related to selective forms of rural tourism, and other natural and legal persons residing in the County have the right to apply for support.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated travel section.

Friday, 13 August 2021

Croatian Air Traffic in June 2021 Outshines June 2020 as Passengers Arrive

August the 13th, 2021 - Croatian air traffic has well and truly outshined the dire situation we experienced last year as the vaccination rollout continues globally and restrictions on travel and tourism slowly but steadily allow for more flexibility. 285 percent more air passengers arrived in June 2021 when compared to the same month in 2020.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Darko Bicak writes, although the ongoing coronavirus pandemic is far from totally over, all indicators suggest that almost all trends and figures in terms of freight and passenger traffic in national and international traffic, if not already returned to their pre-pandemic levels, are very much on track for a safe recovery.

The data from the Central Bureau of Statistics on traffic in Croatian seaports and airports also confirm this. According to that data, traffic in seaports doubled in June this year, and tripled in airports when compared to last year. Croatian air traffic has certainly been on the rebound, and it hasn't come a moment too late.

According to the aforementioned CBS data, 5.43 million passengers embarked and disembarked in Croatian seaports during the second quarter of 2021, which is an increase of 81.8 percent compared to the same period last year.

Compared to pre-pandemic, record 2019, this is still a drop of 41.9 percent, but that isn't really surprising. Circumstances caused by the spread of the novel coronavirus back in 2020 directly affected the decline in passenger and vehicle traffic across all Croatian seaports, and things are now finally showing signs of steady and sure recovery.

After a six-month break, in the second quarter of 2021, the return of passengers on cruise ships began. There have so far been 12 thousand passengers, but compared to the same quarter of 2019, traffic in that sector fell by a depressing 97.6 percent.

In the second quarter of 2021, there was an increase in vehicles on Croatia's roads when compared to 2020, but compared to 2019, 19.5 percent fewer passenger vehicles and 78.6 percent fewer buses were loaded and unloaded on/from vessels.

The total turnover of goods at the level of the Republic of Croatia increased by 10.2 percent when compared to the same period back in 2020, which was caused by the increase in the turnover of dry bulk goods by 42.5 percent, which has a share in the total turnover of goods of 26 percent.

Current cargo turnover, with a share in the total turnover of goods of 51 percent, decreased by 2.6 percent when compared to the same period back in 2020. Of the five ports that account for 92 percent of the total turnover of goods in seaports, the Port of Ploce (57.7 percent), the Port of Rijeka (18.1 percent) and the Port of Split (18.1 percent) all saw increases in 2021's second quarter.

In the first half of 2021, compared to the same period in 2020, the total number of ships arriving in Croatian seaports increased by 30.3 percent, the total passenger traffic by 40.7 percent, and the total cargo traffic by 12.5 percent.

A similar situation, but with more pronounced growth, can be seen in Croatian air traffic, which suffered tremendously throughout 2020.

In June 2021, the total passenger traffic at Croatian airports amounted to 320 thousand or 285.4 percent more than in June 2020, when Croatian air traffic brought only 83 thousand passengers into the country. For comparison, back in June 2019, the turnover was 1.56 million passengers.

In June 2021, 20.6 percent of passenger traffic from June 2019 was realised. The largest amount of passenger traffic was realised by Split Airport, with 115 thousand passengers, which is 360.1 percent more than in June 2020, followed by Zagreb Airport with 100 thousand passengers and Dubrovnik Airport with 59 thousand passengers.

For more, follow our travel section.

Friday, 13 August 2021

How Do Croatian Tourism Figures Stand Compared to Competition?

August the 13th, 2021 - Just how do Croatian tourism figures stand up against Mediterranean competition as the pandemic continues to cause issues for travel? As it turns out, the country is still by far the safest in the entire European Union (EU).

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Marija Crnjak writes, the Republic of Croatia is still the safest European Union tourist destination in the entire Mediterranean, which can be seen in terms of traffic, which is better than the rest of the Mediterranean this year, says the analysis of the Croatian Tourism Association (HUT).

As such, since the beginning of this year, Croatia is close to 70 percent of the results it saw back in record, pre-pandemic 2019, nearby Greece is at about 60 percent, neighbouring Italy is at about 50 percent, while Spain is suffering with new minuses, but the data for the Spanish peak season isn't yet known.

"The excellent tourist season so far and the high number of reservations for the rest of the season and postseason are the result of excellent preparation for this season and the continuously high level of responsibility for the quality of the epidemiological situation of all those on whom the tourist season depends, namely tourism workers, the government, the civil protection directorate and the public health system.

Croatia is currently the safest country in the Mediterranean for key emitting countries, which is why we're attracting great interest from tourists. Our common task is to preserve the good epidemiological situation for as long as possible, because in addition to the excellent main season, we can also have a long post-season, until the end of October,'' said Veljko Ostojic, director of HUT.

After the results for the month of July, when Croatian tourism figures were excellent, with the country recording 80 percent of tourist arrivals and 81 percent of overnight stays when compared to 2019, August brought even better numbers. In the first 10 days of August, many Croatian destinations have been recording tourist results that even surpass those of 2019, which is quite remarkable. For example, the Rovinj Tourist Board, a city that is regularly first on the list of most visited tourist destinations in all of Croatia, confirmed that in August they've so far achieved up to 2 percent higher tourist results on a daily basis compared to the same days in 2019.

HUT compared the ratio of achieved physical tourism indicators from the beginning of the year and in the last summer month for which there has been data released, and in relation to the result from 2019, for Croatia, Italy, Greece and Spain. They used publicly available data and information obtained through the HOTREC network, the European association of the HoReCa industry. They once again confirm that Croatian tourism figures so far have been brilliant.

Italy thus realised 49.3 percent of overnight stays from the beginning of the year to the end of July compared to 2019 (where the number of domestic guests was lower by 28.4 percent while foreigners were 71 percent less). A better result was achieved in July, and the month for the Italians ended with a 12.4 percent lag in tourist arrivals compared to July 2019 (there was an increase of 6.4 percent of domestic guests and a decrease of foreign guests of 31.7 percent). In July, Italy therefore had stronger numbers than Croatia compared to the time before the pandemic struck the world.

From the beginning of the year to the end of July, Greece had 58 percent of tourist overnight stays when compared to 2019. A better result was achieved in July and the month ended at 66 percent of the results from 2019.

Spain, which has unfortunately been in the epidemiological red zone for a long time, is expected to have the weakest result of all, and data is known only for the first half of the year. From the beginning of the year to the end of June, Spain was visited by 5.4 million tourists, which is a decrease of 50 percent compared to the already very poor 2020. In terms of tourist overnight stays there was a minus of 14 percent compared to 2020, which is 74 percent less compared with pre-pandemic 2019.

For more, follow our travel section.

Tuesday, 10 August 2021

Brnjac Confirms: Croatia Continues to be One of Mediterranean's Safest Destinations

August 10, 2021 - Croatia continues to be one of the Mediterranean's safest destinations, says Tourism Minister Nikolina Brnjac. 

According to the eVisitor system, there are currently around one million and 20,000 tourists in Croatia. Last year, at this time, 820 thousand tourists stayed in the country, and in the record 2019, one million and one hundred thousand.

Tourists are still mostly foreign guests, about 860 thousand. They come mostly from Germany, Slovenia, Poland, Austria, and the Czech Republic.

When it comes to the most popular destinations - they are still Rovinj, Vir, Medulin, Porec, Umag, and Mali Lošinj. 

Tourism Minister Nikolina Brnjac was a guest of RTL Danas on Monday.

"Certainly, we expected a good season, but we are delighted with the numbers so far," said Brnjac.

The record 2019 is everyone's goal.

"As for the indicators for both July and August, we are really approaching these values, but in terms of the value of fiscalized bills, we are even above 2019. The epidemiological picture is the Safe Stay project and education and responsibilities of our tourism sector, and we believe that we will continue to be one of the safest destinations in the Mediterranean," said Brnjac.

"At the initiative of the Prime Minister, a meeting will be held with the tourism sector, which will be attended by some members of the Government, presidents of the largest tourism companies and the National Association of Caterers, but unfortunately we cannot take everyone to the meeting, and I apologize to them, and they are included in our advice for the recovery and development of tourism and have been with us since the first day of the Safe Stay project. Therefore, we will show synergy," said Brnjac.

Bar owners are looking for longer working hours because they claim to live off the season.

"I understand their request, but we must be aware that these epidemiological measures have led to results and that we are the safest destination in the Mediterranean today, so if we are smart, I think we can have an excellent tourist year," Brnjac told RTL.

We are in the heart of the season.

"Bookings are outstanding, and we can expect a good year, but we have to be smart and calm and continue to go in that direction and start preparing for the new tourist year," said Brnjac.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated travel section.

 

Monday, 9 August 2021

Rovinj Tourism Booming as Istrian Town Sets Record So Far for 2021!

August the 9th, 2021 - One beautiful coastal Istrian city has set the tourism record so far for the year 2021 as Rovinj tourism is booming. Both visitors and those working in the town's tourism sector can't hide their enthusiasm, especially with memories of the dire situation we endured this time last year.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, currently, more than 38,000 guests are staying in gorgeous Rovinj, and that is, if we look at how things stand today - a six percent increase when compared to the record, pre-pandemic 2019, HTV's Dnevnik reported.

To reach the absolute record this year, Rovinj tourism is still lacking by about twenty percent, but the good news is that a two-millionth overnight stay is expected on the night from Monday to Tuesday, thanks to the loyal German tourists, who make up a third of all guests in Rovinj.

''I'd say that this is the result of good preparation of the tourist season, not only at the level of the City of Rovinj but also that of Istria County as a whole. Thanks also has to be given to the Istrian Civil Protection Directorate. We showcased our responsibility related to vaccination and that showed our guests that we want a safe season and that we want to work,'' said the mayor of Rovinj and the president of the Tourist Board, Marko Paliaga.

He added that it's difficult to predict to predict how the ongoing situation with the pandemic will continue to unfold, but that Istria still hopes for a good September, which will help the entire Croatian economy.

He emphasised the fact that large events have never really attracted many guests to Rovinj during the warm summer months, and that they themselves are responsible for Rovinj tourism's good results, as he says, with excellent catering and hospitality facilities and adherence to anti-epidemic measures. Rovinj has countless smaller events which typically involved tours and gastronomic events.

Back in pre-pandemic 2019, Rovinj tourism enjoyed more than four million overnight stays, and quite unexpectedly, this year could come close to that amazing result. This Istrian city's tourist offer is top notch, and although prices are also high, those who really want to come to Rovinj continue to arrive.

Namely, this Istrian city boasts the most five-star accommodation capacities and is therefore, among other things, the most sought after destination. There is also a luxury marina with five sails. Yachtsmen come from all continents, but most are from Europe. Those who are surely even happier than their guests are the hosts as their earnings are excellent and finally, there is a lot of work to be done for all those involved in Rovinj tourism.

For more, follow our travel section.

Friday, 6 August 2021

Croatian Covid Reservations Cancelled for Last Minute Bookings

August the 6th, 2021 - Croatian covid reservations, which means the far cheaper reservations made months and months ago are being cancelled as higher paying last minute tourists are being favoured by apartment owners.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, this information has come about mainly from irritated Croatian guests who had booked accommodation units last winter, paid for them, and then a day or two before arriving at their destination, they'd received notice of the cancellation of their reservation.

"There are excuses from the landlords that they've had a death in the family, so they don't want to rent their units for a certain period, then their guests got infected with covid, so they have to be allowed to stay in the same apartment/house for another fourteen days," annoyed would-have-been guests told Slobodna Dalmacijap. In reality, this is deception and cheaper Croatian covid reservations are being kicked to the curb as those with deeper pockets turn up on a whim.

It's clear to everyone how the following has happened: in fear of a bad season, landlords offered their units for very low ''covid'' prices, now they've realised that the season is doing far better than anyone could have ever predicted and they're opting for higher paying last minute tourists instead, giving those who had previously reserved the accommodation ridiculous exuses.

Not all landlords are like that, of course. Many have stuck to their guns and rented to those who had made Croatian covid reservations months ago, when the epidemiological picture was dire and the season looked bleak.

One lady decided to book an apartment not far from Split back in March. Four people, one week, with a hundred euro advance payment included, and then two days before departure - she was hit with a shock.

"The reason for the cancellation is allegedly that the German guests who are currently there have become infected and need to isolate there. When I angrily told them that I would send an inspection to their address, they begged me not to report them,'' she said.

In Podstrana close to Split, a similar story played out but with a different reason for cancellation. Before their arrival to their Croatian covid reservation which had been booked months in advance, the would-be renters called the unit's owner and found that their reservation had been cancelled due to an alleged ''death in the family''.

Josko Stella, director of the Split-Dalmatia County Tourist Board, said that he had heard of no similar complaints, and claimed the same from the Croatian Tourist Board, which said they had no knowledge of such unfair practices.

Despite the above claims, we at TCN have been told of several similar cases occuring in Dalmatia, and claiming this isn't happening is adding insult to injury to all of those on the receiving end of this awful behaviour.

For more, follow our lifestyle section.

Wednesday, 4 August 2021

20% More Polish Tourists in Croatia in Summer 2021 Than Summer 2019

August the 4th, 2021 - When it comes to Polish tourists in Croatia, it's almost as if the ongoing global coronavirus pandemic doesn't exist, with the number of Polish tourists in Croatia as surprising and encouraging as it was even last year.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Marija Crnjak writes, the growth of the Polish emitting market when it comes to tourism, which has been recorded in Croatia for several years now, hasn't been halted by the ongoing pandemic. In July this year alone there were as many as 20 percent more Polish tourists in Croatia than there were recorded back during the record 2019 summer before the pandemic.

Polish tourists in Croatia surprised us all with their sheer numbers last year as well, when the tourist season was significantly weaker than this. The Polish market was practically the only emitting market that, despite the epidemiological situation back in August 2020, recorded an increase in arrivals of 4 percent when compared to August 2019. The share of turnover from the Polish emitting market in July and August reached as much as 95 percent of the pre-pandemic year of 2019's impressive figures.

After the figures on the 33 percent increase in overnight stays realised in the current part of the peak season at the level of the entire Republic of Croatia were published, the Dubrovnik-Neretva County tourist board reported an increase in tourist arrivals of as much as 90 percent on Monday. The extreme south of the country, which had the biggest drop last year due to issues with air traffic, recorded 65 percent more overnight stays in July than last year.

Instead of the Brits and Americans, who have been the most numerous guests in Dubrovnik for years now, the most overnight stays so far this summer season were realised by guests from Poland, Slovenia, the rest of Croatia, Germany, neighbouring Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Czech Republic.

Almost 207 thousand overnight stays realised by Polish tourists in Croatia, more specifically in that southern Dalmatian county, is an increase of almost 40 percent when compared to the record year of 2019. It also represents 30 percent more overnight stays realised when compared to the pre-pandemic year of 2019.

As the British market was officially closed in regard to tourism until the middle of the month, Dubrovnik-Neretva County had only 12 percent of overnight stays from that traditionally very secure Northern European market during the month of July, but direct flights with the United States introduced this summer helped bring US traffic to almost 70 percent of 2019's number of overnight stays.

This year, as many as nine times more American guests arrived in Dubrovnik-Neretva County than last year, and there also twice as many Poles, who thus became the most numerous guests in Dubrovnik.

At the level of the whole of Croatia, according to currently unofficial figures, e-Visitor counted 347,346 arrivals of Polish tourists who realised a total of 2.42 million overnight stays, which is not only 50 percent more overnight stays than last year, but a growth of 20 percent compared to to the last normal season of 2019.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated travel section.

Wednesday, 4 August 2021

Last Minute Croatian Holiday Prices on Adriatic Go Wild as Guests Arrive

August the 4th, 2021 - Last minute Croatian holiday prices on the Adriatic coast are going wild as more and more guests arrive and attempt to seek out accommodation. Nobody could have possibly predicted this scenario at the beginning of the year, but could it be that we're finally closing the door on the global pandemic?

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, many predictions were made about summer 2021 for Croatia, and some were a little less negative about it than others, but the optimists who claimed that this summer would end being just a little worse than the summer of record 2019 were few and far between, reports Slobodna Dalmacija.

''I looked at the statistics yesterday and I couldn't believe my eyes. I compared them to those from the same period back in 2019 and concluded that there are only 12 percent fewer guests in Makarska today than there were back during that prosperous pre-pandemic year. In Makarska we have 43 percent higher tourist results than we did during the same period last year!'' stated Tonci Lalic from the Tourist Board of the City of Makarska, adding that the current issue of guests struggling to find places to stay is very real.

''In the age of online reservations, our guests, just like before, physically come to the tourist boards and travel agencies and look for accommodation. Who could have known they'd start doing that given the fact that it has been so long since people did it that way. They come here begging to be helped and they just agree to everything. They'd also spend the night in some accommodation unit somewhere below the hill, just to have it dealt with. We're witnessing a huge influx of tourists,'' explained Lalic as the last minute Croatian holiday phenomenon continues.

In Split, the situation is such that guests agree to rent basement space and ancillary facilities, and the owners suddenly evict tenants from their apartments, aware that, due to a poor assessment of the season that surprised everyone, they should have received tourists and not played it "safely" with longterm tenants. The moment one reservation is cancelled, another is booked, but it also comes with a thirty percent higher price tag.

The catch is that some of the people of Split gave up renting their accommodation units out to tourists last year entirely, so now there's a lack of apartments. The situation is similar to the one when "Ultra" took place in Split in the first few years, and there weren't enough tourist beds available. That's why those hurt by the pandemic and hoping to make some quick and effortless cash are looking to seize the moment and charge prices which go beyond any logic.

For more, follow our travel section.

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