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Global Economy

Winter sports and Covid-19: tourism industry suffers from cancellations

In the European winter sports areas, stricter entry regulations are causing difficulties for the tourism industry. The Salzburg winter sports areas, for example, are experiencing a wave of cancellations. Bookings have been withdrawn for the entire remainder of the winter season. In Austria, a triple vaccination against Covid 19 is currently a prerequisite for entry. Those who do not have a booster vaccination must submit a PCR test.

Erwin Schwarz is a hotel operator in St. Johann-Alpendorf. He reports: "German guests also canceled because the unvaccinated children had to be quarantined after the holiday. We deal with things like that. Postpone, cancel, then there are bookings again – everything."

Worry lines in Austria – joy in Bulgaria

It is a very big effort. The hotel operator also complains that the new rules came into force at very short notice. In addition, Austria has classified Great Britain and the Netherlands as virus variant areas – combined with strict entry regulations.

The winter season is also running in the Bulgarian ski resorts. To the delight of hotel and lift operators, there are twice as many bookings as last year. Traditionally, it is mainly locals who come at Christmas and guests from abroad at the turn of the year.

Brits and locals revitalize Bulgarian winter sports industry

Blagovesta Tomova from the Borovets Hotel Association explains: "Around 40 per cent of our guests are from the UK. Second is the Bulgarian market – we have always shown respect to the local people. Every destination depends on its own market, so guests from Bulgaria are very important and valuable."

The 3G rule applies to entry into Bulgaria. A booster vaccination is not necessary. Certificates only need to be shown in hotels and restaurants.

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