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Switzerland hopes that domestic demand will spur the recovery of tourism, and many scenic spots will target the domestic market

Date: 2020-06-03

Affected by the new crown epidemic, the tourism industry, one of Switzerland's pillar industries, has been hit hard. A Swiss research institute recently released a report saying that one-fifth of tourism-related companies across Switzerland face bankruptcy, and more than 30,000 workers may lose their jobs. Faced with the impact, the government expects to promote the recovery of the tourism industry by stimulating domestic consumption.

It is understood that the cancellation rate of Swiss hotel reservations during the epidemic was about 80%, and the hotel occupancy rate in April was only 8%, a record low for the same period. Statistics from the Swiss Federal Statistical Office show that the number of foreign tourists staying in Swiss hotels fell by nearly 70% in March 2020.

In addition, the Zurich International Airport in Switzerland reported that passenger traffic decreased by 99.6% in April, and the aircraft occupancy rate was only 20%. According to statistics from Geneva Airport, during the severe epidemic period, on average, less than 300 passengers were received per day, which is only 0.5% of the normal pick-up. It is expected that at least 50 million Swiss francs (1 Swiss franc is about 1.03 US dollars) will be lost in 2020.

Officials from the economic sector said that Switzerland’s tourism turnover is expected to drop sharply by 35% by 2020, and it is expected to return to normal by 2022.

The epidemic has caused the border to close and foreign tourists have dropped significantly, and the Swiss tourism industry will hope to send it to the domestic market. Swiss officials called on the public to travel as much as possible in the country this summer, support the recovery of the country’s tourism industry and restart the economy.

In order to restore the tourism industry as soon as possible, the Swiss cantons have launched new projects to attract local tourists on holiday spending. The Director of the Graubünden Tourism Bureau, Martin Vincenz, said that the scenic spots in each state are ready to launch a "marketing war" aimed at the domestic market.

The Canton of Ticino, Switzerland, which was close to Italy, was a severely affected area in Switzerland. As the outbreak eased, the canton introduced preferential policies for scenic spots for domestic tourists and launched a "local travel" project to provide "alternative options" for people who cannot travel to Italy for holidays. . In the Appenzell region of eastern Switzerland, in cooperation with the cantonal government, hotels and the Swiss railway company, for the first time, a free public transport policy was introduced. Tourists who stayed in hotels in the region for more than three nights can take the local train for free.

With the opening of some tourist facilities, various scenic spots put safety guarantees at the top of the restart work. For example, the Arosa Bear Reserve in eastern Graubünden has designed a passage to help tourists keep their distance; the trains in the Jungfrau region of the Alps are open to tourists to book seats or even entire cars to help passengers reduce mutual contact.

In order to revitalize the tourism industry, the Swiss Federal Government has launched targeted rescue measures. In addition to granting subsidies to tourism practitioners affected by the epidemic, the Swiss Federal Parliament passed the 40 million Swiss francs tourism assistance bill at the “Special Meeting” during the new crown epidemic in early May, mainly to support the industry’s market promotional activity.

Taking the Canton of Geneva as an example, the state government plans to provide 4.5 million Swiss francs of loan support to the local tourism industry to prevent more companies from going bankrupt. The state government said that in order to attract more customers, tourists staying in Geneva hotels in July and August only need to pay one-third of the normal room rate, and the rest is subsidized by the state government.

In the aviation industry, the Swiss government announced the provision of a loan guarantee of about 1.9 billion Swiss francs to help the aviation industry overcome difficulties, of which nearly 1.3 billion are used to support airlines and 600 million are used to support ground-related businesses.

With the Swiss epidemic showing a steady trend, representatives of the tourism industry called on the government to speed up the relaxation of relevant restrictions. At the second Swiss "Tourism Summit" in Bern on May 24th, the Swiss Federal President Somaruga said: "Everyone is looking forward to a beautiful summer."

In response to the initiative of the representatives of the tourism industry, the Swiss Federal Government has decided to open all business premises from June 6th, resume the operation of tourist facilities such as mountain cable cars and campgrounds, and allow people within 300 people on the premise of ensuring interpersonal distance Gather.

According to local media reports, some lawmakers have proposed stronger incentives, such as issuing cash coupons or tax breaks to Swiss residents traveling in the country, to speed up the recovery of the tourism industry.