Polish newspaper Rzeczpospolita revealed that travel agencies in Poland have reported a rapid increase in interest in international tourism.
According to an article published Thursday, bookings are up 32 percent from the first two weeks of June 2021 to the same period during the pre-pandemic state.
Moreover, Turkey is the top destination for foreign travelers, followed by Greece, Egypt and Bulgaria, TheSchengen.com reports.
While the most booked destinations for Poles are the seaside and mountains, interest in visiting Albania has increased rapidly while interest in traveling to Spain has waned significantly.
“There is a real explosion of interest,” said Piotr Henic, Vice President of Itaka, Poland’s largest travel agency.
He explained that travel agencies hardly sell any holidays until the rush began in late May.
The newspaper also noted that prices in Poland are higher this year, as they were two years ago, and that vacations there are expensive. A similar price hike will be evident in the Netherlands this year as well.
According to Polish government statistics, in February 2021, there were 88.9 percent fewer people residing in the country, which is 697,400 tourists. During the same month of 2020, Poland counted 2.4 million people accommodated in establishments, despite a 70.7 percent drop in the number of tourists. Of the total number of tourists, 93.3 percent were domestic tourists (650,500), while 6.7 percent (46,900) were international tourists.
Among foreign tourists, Ukrainians were the most frequent visitor to accommodation, making up 20.5 percent of all foreign tourists. However, their numbers were 74.7 percent lower than the previous year. Also, 16.9 percent of all tourists who visited Poland in February 2021 were German.
Stays of domestic tourists in February 2021 decreased by 71.9% compared to February 2020, which was approximately 450,000.
In February 2021, 1.6 million overnight stays were recorded (74.4 percent less than last year), including domestic tourists – 1.4 million (71.9 percent less) and foreign tourists – 0.2 million (86 percent less).
Some of the most popular Polish destinations are the 13th-century salt mine at Wieliczka, the Auschwitz camps, where 900,000 Jews were imprisoned during 1942-44; Warsaw’s Old Market, almost 85 percent rebuilt after its destruction from WWII, and the beautiful Malbork Castle.
The implementation of the European COVID-19 vaccination passport is also expected to facilitate travel for vaccinated European citizens, including Polish travelers. The document also aims to restore safe and free movement in an effort to revive tourism, which has greatly affected the economy of EU member states.