STA, 14 April 2022 - Slovenia's hotel capacities are almost fully booked for Easter and Labour Day holidays. Slovenians are still redeeming their tourist vouchers and visitors from nearby countries are starting to flock in as well. With major business events regaining momentum, the country is also seeing urban tourism gaining ground again.
The Sava Group, Slovenia's largest tourist accommodation provider, has seen bookings return to similar levels as those recorded in the pre-Covid year of 2019. Their capacities for the upcoming holidays are booked to up to 90%. Most of the guests coming to spend their holidays there are from Slovenia, Austria, Germany, Italy, Hungary and Serbia. The company also hopes to see air traffic with countries further away from Slovenia get back on track as soon as possible.
As Covid restrictive measures are lifted, the coastal Primorska region is also regaining foreign guests, which previously made 75% of the region's tourism business. Easter holidays usually see an increase in foreign guests, whereas the majority of guests making reservations for Labour Day holidays are Slovenians.
The Kranjska Gora ski resort is recording a similar trend of Austrian, Italian and German guests. Some 75% of capacities have already been booked. They are seeing an upward trend of last-minute reservations and expect to see an influx of Slovenian guests as vouchers are about to expire, whereas visitors from the Benelux countries are cautious in making bookings due to the Ukrainian war.
Lake Bled resorts see the Easter holidays as an indicator of how the summer season will pan out. Currently, they are happy with the number of bookings, Bled Tourism representatives say, as they are also almost fully booked. Most of their guests are Croatian, Italian, Hungarian and German. Meanwhile, the nearby Bohinj lakeside resort is not as busy at only 60% capacities booked, but local tourism providers expect business will get back on track in the summer.
Urban tourism in Ljubljana and Maribor was one of the areas most hit during the pandemic. Now the situation is looking brighter, says the president of the Slovenian Hoteliers' Association and head of Ljubljana's Slon Hotel Gregor Jamnik. The last couple of weeks have seen some positive trends. Business tourism is back as companies lift travel bans for their employees. Slon has 80% of their capacities booked on Easter and 50% for Labour day.
"We are very glad that the headlines are not full of Covid anymore. Unfortunately, there is the war in Ukraine, but for now it is not affecting us as negatively as we feared," Jamnik said.
He is pleased by the return of British and American guests who have covered the loss of income due to the absence of the Russians. Asian tourists are also scarce in comparison to Europeans who are now travelling more regionally.
Jamnik is content with how the season is going, but concerned about the price hikes that are imminent if the tourism sector is to cover the rise of costs. "We are seeing our suppliers raising prices on a weekly basis," he added.