Croatia has got the first eleven travel agencies certified for senior tourism and implementation of specialized programs for senior citizens aged 55 +, who travel more and more every year and represent one of the fastest growing market segments in the total tourist travels.
UNPAH or the Croatian Association of Independent Travel Agencies carried out the certification with a support of the Ministry of Tourism and the Croatian Tourist Board (HTZ) in accordance with European directives and the National program of Social Tourism. Among eleven certified tourist agencies in Croatia are Adriatours DMC, Adriatic TT DMC, Alfa Travel DMC, Azur Tours, Event-s DMC, Istraline DMC, Kompas Zagreb DMC, Kvarner Express Split DMC, Maestral VB DMC, Puh Tours DMC, and Svijet putovanja DMC.
According to data from Eurostat for 2014, tourists aged 55+ and 65+ accounted for 37 percent of the total travels in the EU, whilst senior groups of tourists from France, Germany, the UK, Spain and Italy realized 800,000 overnight stays in Europe in 2014. Furthermore, according to data from the European Network for Accessible Tourism (ENAT) for November 2016, every fifth person in Europe today is aged 60+, whilst senior citizens from Europe realize 6 to 7 travels a year, with a desire to travel and enjoy life such as tourists from Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Scandinavia,who have the highest incomes, thus better opportunities for tourist spending.
''Trends from this market are also present in the Croatian tourism industry; many agencies, hotels and other service providers are working with this segment, however, the number of tourist arrivals and overnight stays of senior tourists and their spending are still not being followed statistically'', commented Vlasta Klaric, the secretary of UNPAH.
Klaric also emphasizes that senior tourists are mostly travellers who like to travel in the off-season when destinations are less crowded; they prefer peaceful and relaxing programs, whether it is sightseeing, stay at the spa etc.They usually travel several times a year for longer periods of time, and show