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Ecostat Tourism Barometer falls slightly in H1

Ecostat's latest Tourism Barometer, a measure of sentiment in Hungary's Tourism Industry, fell 2.2 percentage points to 33.3% in the first half of this year, exceeding its level in H1 2009 by 0.4 percentage points.

The researchers attributed the decline to the uncertainty persisting in both the economy and the tourism sector as well as among households in the first half of 2010.

The hotel-sector index fell 2.4 percentage points from the previous six months to 37.1% in H1 2010. The survey shows hotel companies expect business opportunities stabilise at the current level for both the sector and their own business in the coming six months. They project a decline primarily in the number of business and conference tourists. Hotel companies have modest investment plans, while 67% expect to see the emergence of strong new competitors.

The catering-sector index fell 1.8 percentage points from the previous six months to 31.1%, this is 4.2 percentage points lower than one year earlier. Those operating in the sector have modest investment plans and only 15.4% are planning investments creating new jobs, with funding obtained from EU sources, with 7.7% planning to make hire new employees. Restaurants clearly project a decline in the number of both domestic and foreign guests.

The travel-agency index was 31.7% in H1 2010, down 2.3 percentage points from H2 2009 and down 4.1 percentage points from one year earlier. Travel agents project stagnating tourist numbers both from Hungary and abroad and have modest investment plans.

The survey shows 70-75% of Hungarian families will spend their holidays in Hungary this year. Half of companies provide some form of assistance in support of employee holidays, compared to 36.6% six months earlier. Employers provide 44% of the financial assistance in the form of holiday vouchers compared to 33% six months earlier. (MTI Econews)