Long distance travellers aspires to visit Europe 

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The European Travel Commission (ETC) has revealed that based on the latest Haul Travel Barometer (LHTB), which provides data on travellers’ intention for taking trips during the summer of 2022, the desire for overseas travel to Europe from several top source markets will remain below the pre-pandemic levels.

In a statement issued on Wednesday, May 25, the ETC also stressed that the desire to travel had improved slightly compared to a year ago.

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“The LHTB from the European Travel Commission (ETC) and Eurail BV examines travel intentions in six overseas markets – Brazil, Canada, China, Japan, Russia, and the United States every four months. Intention to travel is measured in an index that reflects the dominant sentiment expressed by a market, either positive or negative,” the statement reads.

Meanwhile, values ​​above 100 index points indicate a positive evolution, while those below 100 indicate negative attitudes towards travel in a certain period.

Given the conflict between Ukraine and Russia, which has created new challenges for the European travel sector, the same has had a limited impact on sentiment in most long-distance source markets. In addition, countries like China and Russia stand out, where 76 per cent of respondents said the conflict did not affect their purpose of travel.

In this regard, ETC President Luís Araújo said he was pleased to see that long-distance travel is gradually improving, adding that it is encouraging that the ongoing conflict in Ukraine has not become another obstacle to international travel in Europe.

“Europe remains a safe and attractive travel destination. Nonetheless, the fallout from the conflict, such as rising living costs and travel-related costs, are hampering the sector’s recovery. Promoting Europe in overseas markets and restoring international mobility will be crucial for the sector’s recovery in 2022,” he also pointed out.

Due to the ongoing war in Ukraine and the subsequent sanctions imposed on Russia, the desire of Russian travellers to visit Europe reached the lowest level recorded by about 78 points. This means that it is significantly lower than the feeling expressed during the wave of the first COVID-19 that in 2020, during the months from May to August, turned out to be 87 points.

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As for Chinese travellers, the ongoing conflict has prevented about 19 per cent of them from visiting Europe.

However, the desire to visit Europe has increased slightly, which means + six points compared to last summer.

Yet, the Russian invasion of Ukraine has caused insecurity among travellers as a large number of tourists are already cancelling their planned trips to countries bordering Russia and Ukraine, including here the Baltic region.

Executive Director of the Latvian Association of Hotels and Restaurants, Santa Graikste, said that hotel reservations were cancelled at a rate of about 60 per cent in Latvia.

 

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