It’s high summer in Paris, but the number of foreign visitors has dropped by 15 % since the starting of the season, with tourism authorities reporting at least six percent fewer Americans arriving at France this coming year when compared with 2015. The identical situation applies across the country, according to local tourism officials.
Laurent Duc from the hotel owners’ union UMIH blamed the problem on security fears and labor unrest.
“When they watch precisely what is happening in France on television Americans only observe that the land is broken. There are strikes from the airports, the streets are filled with trash, also due to strikes not to mention the terrorist attacks,” he said. “Therefore they [avoid] our country.”
Duc, who owns an hotel near the town of Lyon, will not be alone in the be concerned about the labor unrest security generally and Americans specifically this year season. Normally around 3.2 million Americans visit France every year.
Airlines companies say 19.2 percent fewer flights were booked to France by American visitors during the last week of July.
Following the first quarter, there was 35 percent fewer American visitors than in the same period last year, according to Didier Chenet, president of the hotels, restaurants and bars union, GNI-Synhorcat.
“We have already had 10 percent less bookings within the Paris region for this particular summer in comparison with last year,” he added.
The Paris region particularly is severely affected by the drop in quantities of American tourists. For the usually popular summer sales, relative few United states tourists made the trip.
“This year we had much fewer Americans in comparison to the other years,” said Sheherazad Beljnaoui, head of a women fashion store in the capital’s Le Marais neighborhood. “In general they like our clothes and are generally numerous all year around but in particular throughout the sales. Not this season.”
The south east of France has suffered a good deal 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, nevertheless the main agency that promotes tourism in america, Atout France, confirmed a six percent drop in the volume of American visitors in July when compared to the same month just last year.
“Europeans are still numerous, but tourists from the United states and Canada in addition to Japan and Brazil are far less than this past year,” said spokesman Philippe Maud’hui.
He was quoted saying those visitors tend to spend more money than French or European tourists do on hotels and restaurants.
The terror attack in Nice, and also the killing of your priest near to the city of Rouen by two men linked to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL) included with existing concerns about safety.
In May the State Department cautioned Americans about traveling to France, citing last year’s terrorist attacks. The advisory is valid until August 31.
France’s secretary of state for tourism, Matthias Fekl, claimed that wealthy tourists from three regions especially – the Usa, Asia and Gulf countries – “reacted strongly to str1ke attacks” and are most often staying away.
But tourism industry representatives say strikes are contributing to the normal drop in foreign tourist numbers.
The country was only emerging in the negative effects of the November ISIS attacks in Paris when industrial actions erupted.
After France, another most in-demand place to go 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 way it is.