It’s high summer in Paris, but the quantity of foreign visitors has dropped by 15 % since the start of the entire year, with tourism authorities reporting at least six percent fewer Americans coming to France this current year when compared with 2015. The same situation applies across the country, in accordance with local tourism officials.
Laurent Duc of the hotel owners’ union UMIH blamed the specific situation on security fears and labor unrest.
“When they watch precisely what is happening in France on tv Americans only notice that the continent is broken. There are strikes inside the airports, the streets are loaded with 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 city of Lyon, will not be alone in his be concerned about the labor strike security companies generally speaking and Americans particularly this season season. Normally around 3.2 million Americans visit France each year.
Airlines companies say 19.2 percent fewer flights were booked to France by American visitors over the last week of July.
Following the initial quarter, there had been 35 percent fewer American visitors than throughout the same period this past year, according to Didier Chenet, president in the hotels, restaurants and bars union, GNI-Synhorcat.
“We have already had 10 percent less bookings within the Paris region just for this summer in comparison with a year ago,” he added.
The Paris region especially has been severely affected by the drop in variety of American tourists. For the usually popular summer sales, relative few United states tourists made the trip.
“This year we had much fewer Americans than the other years,” said Sheherazad Beljnaoui, head of a women fashion store inside the capital’s Le Marais neighborhood. “In general they enjoy our clothes and they are numerous all year around nevertheless in particular in the sales. Not this coming year.”
The south east of France has suffered a lot because 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, however the main agency that promotes tourism in america, Atout France, confirmed a six percent drop in the number of American visitors in July in comparison to the same month last year.
“Europeans will still be numerous, but tourists coming from the United states and Canada as well as Japan and Brazil are generally under a year ago,” said spokesman Philippe Maud’hui.
He was quoted saying those visitors have a tendency to spend more money money than French or European tourists do on hotels and restaurants.
The terror attack in Nice, and also the killing of the priest close to the town of Rouen by two men linked to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS/ISIL) added to existing concerns about safety.
Back May their state Department cautioned Americans about going to France, citing last year’s terrorist attacks. The advisory applies until August 31.
France’s secretary of state for tourism, Matthias Fekl, said that wealthy tourists from three regions specifically – the Usa, Asia and Gulf countries – “reacted strongly to str1ke attacks” and appear to be staying away.
But tourism industry representatives say strikes are contributing to the typical drop in foreign tourist numbers.
The continent was only emerging in the negative effects of the November ISIS attacks in Paris when industrial actions erupted.
After France, another most widely used 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 will benefit from France’s losses this current year, although no official figures are yet offered to show whether which will be the truth.