BARRIERS HIDERING THE BULGARIAN TOURIST SUMMER SEASON 2020 AND MEASURES TO OVERCOME THEM

(Based on statements of tourist business enterprises working in the Bulgarian Black Sea coast)

The World Travel and Tourism Council has recently reported up to 50 million people from the tourist industry are to be declared as unemployed and 25% decrease of travel due to pandemic situation.

Coronavirus has also affected the tourism in Bulgaria a lot. Many Bulgarians have already canceled their domestic and international reservations. Due to the contagion, bankruptcies are being foreseen by the industry, and tour companies are already suffering losses. Losses are expected by the hotels and accommodation enterprises that rely on tourist exhibitions to promote their products. The Bulgarian tourism sector employs over 290,000 people and huge staff cuts in each of the sub-sector’s sectors is expected. On the other hand there are plenty and favourable pre-conditions in Bulgaria e.g. natural, material, human resources, etc. which would ensure the tourists stay after the pandemic period.

In order to deal with the new dynamics in the most painless way, representatives of the Bulgarian tourism industry have proposed a set of rescue measures for the summer 2020 which are to be presented before the Ministry of Tourism:

  • Provision of regular information on the current tourism status in Bulgaria to potential tourists.
  • Elaboration and presentation of safety measures for accommodation in the tourist facilities.
  • Promotion of commercial actions and stimulus for holidays and visits in the resorts.
  • Ensure transport accessibility to Bulgaria by means of air and road connections over established tourist corridors.
  • Rearrange of visa regime for Russian Federation, Turkey and Arabic countries.
  • Inland tourism development after the crisis by uniting the state and business to offer products and services at preferable prices and their financing.

The Ministry of Tourism should make use of the international environment and reposition the national tourism advertising so as to highlight the advantages of Bulgaria within the pandemic situation.