Tourism is slowly reviving. Hungarian tourists are in the majority around Lake Balaton, while foreigners are in the majority in Budapest. In April, turnover increased by 90% compared to the same period in 2021. However, during the coronavirus pandemic, a significant part of the workforce left the hospitality industry. The impact of this is still being felt.
For now, the data are for April. These show a 90% increase in total turnover in the hospitality sector compared to last year. A similar trend is expected for May and the summer. However, there can be no clouds of joy.
The biggest problems are labour shortages and price rises.
The summer also looks promising because with the weak forint exchange rate, it is more affordable for Hungarians and foreigners to go on holiday in Hungary. The hospitality industry will also be boosted by the return of festivals this year. July and August are peak seasons for restaurants.
Experts say that higher labour costs and price rises could put many enterprises out of business. Some restaurants may benefit from this, but there have still been places where people had to wait 30-40 minutes for their food because of overcrowding. Vg.hu reports that the owner cannot take out a significant part of the revenue due to the loss of income and losses accumulated during the coronavirus pandemic.
There is a continuous rise in prices in both the Balaton and the capital’s restaurants. Penzcentrum.hu shows the price increase by looking at the data of two products, beer and Hungarians’ favourite beach food, lángos. The older generation may remember when lángos cost HUF 1-2.
According to Central Statistical Office (KSH) figures, the average price of a plain, untopped lángos in May 2022 was HUF 443 (EUR 1.1). The HUF 443 is just an average, including the HUF 1000 (EUR 2.5) at Lake Balaton and the much cheaper market products. Whereas in the past, it was only at festivals and Christmas markets that the price of a lángos reached HUF 1000.
According to KSH data, the average price of light beer was HUF 193 (EUR 0.5) in July 2017, while in May this year it was HUF 253 (EUR 0.63).
Source: vg.hu, penzcentrum.hu
Balaton, gets media attention, that sells it, as a totally DIFFERENT, place, than being in Hungary.
The taking of a day trip or a Family Hoilday – in recent years, has become “out of range” for the greater number of the 9.6 million population of Hungary.
Post February 2020 – articles that have been regular in DNH – “paint” the picture of this place Balaton, house prices, accomadation costs wining & dining – at EXPLOSIVE increases.
Sustainability – of this IMAGE of Balaton, in an Economy, that is in “free fall” – is this IMAGE going to be maintained by the “rich & famous” – those in the upper class of Hungarian Society and Foreign Tourists ???
Balaton – will not be sustained out the disposable income – if there is any – from the middle to lower class “hard workers” of the Hungarian population.
Balaton – has become out of reach – for continual growing numbers of Hungarians – SADLY.
BLAME – must come back not just on operators of Hotels, Restaurants and “other” facilities – provided at Balaton, but on the present Government who have NOT taken a position, that FACTUALLY occuring in Balaton, is practices that are – GREED & Explotation.
The reduction of restaurants in Balaton – not surprised but the “Big Fish” will eat the little one’s – who in large numbers can’t be accused of Greed & Explotation.