Andrew J. Wein - Sep 21, 2020
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International tourism revenues fell by 49.4% from January to the end of July 2020 in France because of the pandemic, but "attendance was generally better than expected" thanks to the mobilization of the French, according to an assessment presented at the Council of Ministers.

According to the first estimates of the Bank of France, these international revenues thus amounted "to 16.7 billion euros against 33.1 billion euros" over the same seven-month period in 2019, detailed the document presented by Jean-Baptiste Lemoyne, Secretary of State in charge of Tourism.

The level of tourist activity in July in France "increased belatedly but significantly from July 20 to reach correct occupancy rates during the first two weeks of August in collective commercial accommodation", the report also notes. 94% of the French people who traveled, stayed in France.

The coastline and the countryside were the most popular, while Corsica, overseas territories and major cities were more neglected.

Regarding the spending of French holidaymakers abroad from January to the end of July 2020, they reached 14.4 billion euros against 26.1 billion last year, a decline of 44.7%.

In France, the expected fall in tourist spending in 2020, French and foreigners included, is more limited, between -30% and -35%, with potential losses in overall tourist revenue estimated over the year by Atout France at an amount between 50 and 60 billion euros.

"In addition to the hotel industry in Paris and the major cities, two sectors were particularly weakened, namely the event industry and the travel and tourism operators (OVS)," the report points out, quantifying the respective declines in activity at -70% and -90%.

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