By Sabina Kvášová, Managing Director | SRDCE EVROPY, Czech Republic | Sabina@srdce.evropy.cz
We Czechs have a reputation of liking travel. At least one or two Czechs can be encountered in the most remote corners of the globe. Not bad for a country that’s only as populated as, say, Greece...
Czechs travel primarily to countries that can be reached by car, such as Croatia, Italy and Slovakia. However, the current favorable economic situation in the Czech Republic leads us to believe that quality services will gradually prevail and using your own transportation will be replaced by air travel. Having compared the Czech Republic with the rest of the European Union, we can see that Czechs are almost the least frequent flyers in the European Union in terms of holiday travel. With these facts in mind, foreign travel destinations should see the the Czech Republic as an opportunity for their communication campaigns.
Last year saw the highest number of Czech people in history enjoying holidays abroad. 4.928 million Czech tourists took a trip with at least four overnight stays. This figure represents a 15+ % rise in comparison to 2016. The most popular destination was Croatia, visited by 850,000 Czechs. Year-on-year this number has grown by 3 percent, but the strongest growth was experienced in trips to Bulgaria and Egypt. In contrast, research shows that Czechs interest in travelling to France has diminished.
The preeminent position of Croatia is hardly surprising. For the last 20 years, this destination has stayed at the top of the outgoing travel roster, except in 2015, when Croatia was surpassed by Slovakia in the statistics issued by the Czech Statistical Office. Driven by a 15% growth compared to the previous year, Italy has been newly ranked in second place with 636,000 Czech tourists visiting. Ranking third is Slovakia with 615,000 longer trips.
Statistics indicate that Czechs chose holidays involving air travel the least out of any country within the European Union, with the exception of Romania. A longer car trip consisting of 4 nights + was made by 2.309 million Czechs last year, while 1.819 million Czechs chose to fly. This year the top three destinations where flying is a must are expected to be Turkey, Greece and Spain, followed by Bulgaria and Egypt.
We will need to wait until the end of the year to discover if these expectations will be met. At present, the Czech economy is thriving, households are prosperous, and the same can therefore be expected of the Czech Republic’s outgoing tourism.
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