Croatia 6th Favourite Destination for Early Summer Break for Europeans

By 18 February 2022

February the 18th, 2022 - European tourists after an early summer break are choosing Croatia more and more frequently, and although the pandemic is still very much around, the situation has altered drastically across the continent and travel for leisure has been made far easier for the vaccinated.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Marija Crnjak writes, although due to the still current global coronavirus pandemic and the currently circulating Omicron variant of the novel virus, Europeans' intentions to travel across borders are still slightly lower than they were last summer, they are significantly higher than they were a year ago, which makes the prospect of early summer tourist traffic very optimistic. An early summer break in Croatia could be just what many tourists need.

Longer trips are expected this year, during which tourists will of course spend more, covid certificates aren't as important to travellers as they were last year, and so far travellers are most attracted to enjoying a beach holiday somewhere along the coast where they will indulge in new experiences and local culture.

Croatia is the sixth most popular tourist destination for Europeans wanting an early summer break, behind the traditionally leading countries of France and Spain, Italy, Germany and Greece, behind which Croatia is only just lagging. And when it comes to Croatian tourism itself, the biggest hit this summer season could once again be tourists from Poland, for whom the country remains the number one choice.

These are the results of the latest research conducted for the European Commission (EC) for Travel in December by Mindhause (Monitoring Sentiment for Domestic and Intra-European Travel - Wave 10), with a detailed analysis of the current sentiment in Europe's leading emitting markets.

It turned out that concrete bookings made back in December 2021 were still relatively low, and early booking is still slow. Although 36 percent of Europeans are planning a trip in the months of May and June, only 17 percent have already made a reservation for an early summer break.

Despite this, as many as 61 percent of respondents in this survey are optimistic about travel in the period up to early July, with 50 percent of travel in this period planned within Europe itself.

Another positive trend is the intention of travellers to stay longer and spend more money when at their chosen destination. The propensity to travel longer than 10 nights is up 38 percent from a previous survey taken back in September, while the share of travellers planning to spend more than 2,000 euros is up 31 percent, especially among those planning to travel in May or June 2022.

For 63 percent of travellers, a holiday is the main motivator for travel, although the business segment is also showing gradual progress for the first time since autumn 2020. In the next few months, 15 percent of respondents expect to travel to attend a meeting, conference or event.

Although Europeans are eager to travel, they're postponing the booking process in hopes of enjoying more freedom and mobility later on, without the need for testing and quarantine, which is still being sought to some degree or another by several countries if you're not vaccinated.

Travel planning is therefore being extended once again, and the booking framework is being expanded - only 4 out of 10 future travellers have chosen their destination but have not yet booked, while only 19 percent have partially booked transport or accommodation for their next trip.

The Germans are a little hesitant...

Croatia is in the five most popular destinations for the Poles, Austrians and French, with Polish tourists putting the country in the top position, with as many as 10 percent of respondents preparing to head to Croatia by June.

As many as 80 percent of Poles are ready to travel, 48 percent plan to travel abroad, 47 percent will travel with family, most of them will stay for 4-9 days, and the largest share of Poles plan to spend up to 1,000 euros on travel, while more than a fifth of Poles have budget from 1,500 to 2,500 euros.

In the period until the end of June, the Austrians are in 4th place in terms of popularity, before Greece, while the French are in 5th place. Surprisingly 40 percent of Germans, otherwise very faithful to Croatia, are still undecided as to whether they'll travel or not.

Among those planning to do so, more than a quarter plan to travel within the country, with 50 percent going across the border, mostly to Austria and Spain, and in fifth place to Greece. Only 14 percent of Germans booked a holiday back in December.

For more, check out our travel section.