Hungarian tourism is struggling, with a fifth of bookings cancelled in March and April.
As we can read in Index’s article, although many foreign tourists in Budapest are not afraid of the war, data shows that not only Russian and Ukrainian tourists cancel their reservations anymore.
According to Judit Lázár, president of Hungarian Inbound Professionals’ Association, 20% of bookings in Hungary in March were cancelled by foreign guests citing the war. These were mainly business trips. Tourists are holding off on April trips, but many are already postponing their bookings, which were previously fixed for spring. This figure does not include cancelled bookings by Russian and Ukrainian tourists.
An Italian told RTL Klub news that he was sad about what was happening in Ukraine but thought he could come to Hungary “because the events of the war are not so close”. A British man asked his Hungarian friends about the situation. He was told by people he knew who lived near the border that they were safe in Hungary and, therefore, he was not worried.
According to Index, RTL Klub reports that Air Canada fears a drop in interest in travel due to the war. The airline had previously planned to fly three times a week from Toronto to Budapest from May. Now, however, the airline has postponed its Hungarian service for the time being.
Since the outbreak of the war, Hungarian tourism has considerably slowed down which is demonstrated by the falling number of bookings. Balázs Bakó, the spokesman for the Association of Hungarian Travel Agencies, told RTL Klub that not only Russian and Ukrainian guests have cancelled their bookings in Hungary, but many North American and Asian tourists have also changed their minds.
According to napi.hu, cancellations occur both overseas and in Europe, but the Americans seem to be less worried that the war could expand beyond Ukraine’s borders. At least, that is what the recent full attendance at the US cruise line conference held in our country shows, said Judit Lázár.