Sara Thopson - May 6, 2024
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The Great France Association is a professional federation that represents the tourism sector. They surveyed their members recently and observed that the upcoming Olympic Games in Paris could negatively impact the industry and Parisian tourism operators.

The association was founded during the COVID-19 crisis in July 2020 and brings together various stakeholders in the French DMC sector, including leisure activity providers, excursion companies, tourist transport services, incoming agencies, and public places.

Three months before the Olympics, the survey received responses from 88 tourism operators, with a majority (58%) from the Île-de-France region. The survey showed that almost all Parisian tourism operators (75%) anticipate a negative impact from the Olympics. Reasons cited include:

  • Excessively high prices for flights and hotels.
  • Concerns about negative media coverage.
  • Increased security measures.

Some tour operators are even advising their clients to avoid France this year, indicating the seriousness of the situation.

25% of Operators Plan to Take a Break

Furthermore, 25% of Parisian tourism operators consider pausing their activity during the sporting events.

Almost 40% of respondents in the Ile-de-France region anticipate declining activity during June and September. This can be attributed to venue preparations, June traffic disruptions, and the September Paralympic Games.

Expectations of a windfall from an influx of tourists seem unlikely to materialize. This study confirms data from the Paris Tourist Office, which states that 92% of visitors will be French, with 43% coming from the Ile-de-France region. The Olympics, therefore, may not be as international an event as initially expected in terms of attendance. If professionals have to suffer two months of activity loss out of the six months of the season, the overall impact of the 2024 Olympics on their business will be significant.

French Regions Are Not Much Affected

According to the association, the impact of the Olympics in French regions will be less notable for the respondents. Less than half of the operators outside of Paris expect to be affected by the event.

Those who expect a negative impact mention a significant dependence on Parisian tourism. On the other hand, those who anticipate a positive impact mention avoidance as the first step. In other words, they suggest a possible postponement of activity to benefit the regions.

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