Hungarian Tourism Agency Head Augurs Record Year in 2023
Péter Horváth, who heads the Hungarian Tourism Agency, said the country's tourism sector could beat 2019 records this year in an interview broadcast on Trend Fm on Thursday.
Horváth noted that 14.2 million visitors spent close to 40 million guest nights in Hungary last year, close to the 2019 record.
He said this year is off to a "promising start" with January guest nights up 15% from the same month a year earlier and February bookings indicating a 10% increase over the base period.
Guest nights could rise to 6.3 mln in the first quarter from 5.9 mln in the same period a year earlier, he added.
He said the Veszprém-Balaton 2023 European Capital of Culture program as well as the 2023 World Athletics Championships that Budapest will host in August are expected to bring a number of visitors to Hungary. Already, 189,000 nights have been booked for the athletics worlds, he added.
Horváth said the agency's strategy for 2023-2030 aims to make Hungary the leading destination in Central Europe, drawing 20 million visitors and boosting guest nights to 50 million. The goal is to raise the tourism and catering sector's contribution to GDP to 16% from 12% in 2022, he added.
He said that in the 40 days since China lifted pandemic restrictions, 40,000 bookings have come from the country.
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