It’s high summer in Paris, but the volume of foreign visitors has dropped by 15 percent since the beginning of the year, with tourism authorities reporting at the very least six percent fewer Americans visiting France this coming year in comparison to 2015. The identical situation applies country wide, in accordance with local tourism officials.
Laurent Duc from the hotel owners’ union UMIH blamed the specific situation on security fears and labor unrest.
“When they watch exactly what is happening in France on television Americans only realize that the continent is broken. You can find strikes in the airports, the streets are full of trash, also as a result of strikes not to mention the terrorist attacks,” he explained. “Therefore they [avoid] our country.”
Duc, who owns an hotel near the town of Lyon, is just not alone in their concern yourself with the strike security in general and Americans especially over the summer season. Normally around 3.2 million Americans visit France each and every year.
Airlines companies say 19.2 percent fewer flights were booked to France by American visitors within the last week of July.
After the first quarter, there had been 35 percent fewer American visitors than through the same period a year ago, as outlined by Didier Chenet, president from the hotels, restaurants and bars union, GNI-Synhorcat.
“We have previously had 10 percent less bookings within the Paris region for this summer when compared with this past year,” he added.
The Paris region in particular is severely afflicted with the drop in amounts of American tourists. For the usually popular summer sales, relative few U.S. tourists made the trip.
“This year we had much fewer Americans in comparison to the other years,” said Sheherazad Beljnaoui, head of any women fashion store inside the capital’s Le Marais neighborhood. “In general they love our clothes and they are generally numerous all year around however in particular through the sales. Not this season.”
The south east of France has also suffered a whole lot ever since the July 14 terror attack in Nice, which cost 84 lives on Bastille Day. Their State Secretary of Tourism has not yet published official numbers, although the main agency that promotes tourism in america, Atout France, confirmed a six percent drop in the amount of American visitors in July when compared to same month a year ago.
“Europeans will still be numerous, but tourists from the Usa and Canada in addition to Japan and Brazil are generally less than a year ago,” said spokesman Philippe Maud’hui.
He said those visitors tend to spend more money than French or European tourists do on hotels and restaurants.
The terror attack in Nice, as well as the killing of any priest near the city of Rouen by two men linked to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL) included with existing concerns about safety.
Back May their state Department cautioned Americans about visiting France, citing last year’s terrorist attacks. The advisory is valid until August 31.
France’s secretary of state for tourism, Matthias Fekl, said that wealthy tourists from three regions particularly – the U.S., Asia and Gulf countries – “reacted strongly to str1ke attacks” and seem to be staying away.
But tourism industry representatives say strikes are adding to the normal drop in foreign tourist numbers.
The continent was only emerging from the results of the November ISIS attacks in Paris when industrial actions erupted.
After France, the following most popular destination for American visitors is Britain. Some 3.01 million visited that country last year, tourism data show.
Next came Spain and Ireland, with 1.22 and 1.17 million respectively.
Britain, Spain and Ireland may benefit from France’s losses this year, although no official figures are yet available to show whether that can be the situation.