It’s high summer in Paris, but the quantity of foreign visitors has dropped by 15 % since the beginning of the season, with tourism authorities reporting at the very least six percent fewer Americans coming to France this season in comparison to 2015. Exactly the same situation applies across the country, according to local tourism officials.
Laurent Duc in the hotel owners’ union UMIH blamed the situation on security fears and labor unrest.
“When they watch exactly what is happening in France on television Americans only see that the nation is broken. You can find strikes within the airports, the streets are packed with trash, also because of strikes as well as the terrorist attacks,” he stated. “Therefore they [avoid] our country.”
Duc, who owns an hotel near to the city of Lyon, is not alone in their worry about the labor strike security companies generally and Americans especially this 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 during the last week of July.
At the conclusion of the 1st quarter, there have been 35 percent fewer American visitors than during the same period just last year, as outlined by Didier Chenet, president from the hotels, restaurants and bars union, GNI-Synhorcat.
“We have had 10 percent less bookings inside the Paris region just for this summer in comparison to a year ago,” he added.
The Paris region particularly has been severely affected by the drop in numbers of American tourists. For the usually popular summer sales, relative few Usa 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 from the capital’s Le Marais neighborhood. “In general they appreciate our clothes and they are generally numerous all year around but in particular during the sales. Not this season.”
The south east of France has also suffered a lot ever since the July 14 terror attack in Nice, which cost 84 lives on Bastille Day. Their State Secretary of Tourism has not published official numbers, however the main agency that promotes tourism in the country, Atout France, confirmed a six percent drop in the amount of American visitors in July compared to the same month just last year.
“Europeans remain numerous, but tourists coming from the United states and Canada as well as Japan and Brazil are generally below a year ago,” said spokesman Philippe Maud’hui.
He explained those visitors tend to spend more money money than French or European tourists do on hotels and restaurants.
The terror attack in Nice, as well as the killing of your priest nearby the city of Rouen by two men linked to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL) put into existing concerns about safety.
Back in 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 specifically – the United states, 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 overall drop in foreign tourist numbers.
The nation was just emerging in the results of the November ISIS attacks in Paris when industrial actions erupted.
After France, the next most favored place to go for American visitors is Britain. Some 3.01 million visited that country this past 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 coming year, although no official figures are yet accessible to show whether that will be the way it is.