FRENCH RIVIERA BOOSTED BY FOREIGN TOURISTS

Nik Fes - Mar 11, 2019
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According to the Regional Center for Tourism, the increase in the number of foreign tourists has compensated for the drop of French tourist demand.

After the Nice attack of July 14, 2016, tourism on the Côte d'Azur (French Riviera) confirmed in 2018 "the excellent level reached in 2017", with more than 11 million of stays and a re-bound of the Japanese and American clients, according to the Regional Centre for Tourism.

Historical pillar of the local economy, with 75,000 jobs and 6 billion of direct turnover, tourism had wavered after the attack that left 86 dead on the Promenade of Englishmen among which were many foreign nationals.

In 2018, the CRT (TRM) stated that, the increase in foreign tourists made it possible to compensate for the decrease of the domestic tourist demand at the French Riviera. The American visitors obtained 2nd position for the first time, before the Italians and Germans. Ireland and UK are on the top of the foreign tourists ranking.

David Lisnard, mayor of Cannes, chairman of CRT, welcomed the increase of 100,000 stays of inter-continental customers, especially the American market and the good tourism scores linked to sport and luxury.

In 2018, the occupancy rate of hotels and residences rose to 63% and on the seaside, tariffs increased between 3 and 5%. Platforms like AirBnB gained market shares, from 10 to 17% in two years.

In the Var, France's first tourist department after Paris, the 2018 tourism figures expected in April should also attest to stability. The VisitVar departmental committee reports more nights in luxury hotels (+ 8% over the year) and more foreign tourists in all the hotels in high season, from May to August.

The year 2019 starts as a fanfare on the Côte d'Azur supported by a splendid weather in February, with + 25% of visitors participating in the Feast of Lemon Chin (215,000) and + 35% in the Carnival of Nice (204,000 visitors), ski resorts filled and up to four times more visitors to the Marineland Marin Amusement park in Antibes during the school holidays, compared to last year.

The Nice Côte d'Azur Airport, which will offer 120 destinations this summer including 96 abroad, shows a 5.5% increase in passenger traffic at the start of 2019, after that of 2018 (13,850,000, + 4.1%).

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