The Mayor of the City of Dubrovnik Mato Franković and his Deputy Jelka Tepsic met yesterday with representatives of the Dubrovnik Tourist Guides Association and the Tourist Guides Guild to discuss the current situation in the tourism industry and expectations for the continuation of 2020 and the 2021 season. Head of the Department of Tourism, Economy and the Sea Marko Miljanic and the Director of the Dubrovnik Tourist Board Ana Hrnic were also present at the meeting.
Speaking of the consequences of the coronavirus epidemic in the tourism and transport sector, Mayor Frankovic informed the participants about the main conclusions of the meeting with Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic held last week in Banski dvori. Primarily, given that Dubrovnik is entirely an air destination, the importance of ensuring the preconditions for landing international flights at Dubrovnik Airport was emphasized. One of the important goals is to enable the landing of charter flights as private aircrafts from the European Union and the United Kingdom to Dubrovnik Airport and the entry of mega yachts.
- This season will be far from ideal, we expect the realization of 30 percent of last year's tourist traffic and in that sense I am optimistic that we will achieve that. The goal is for the economy to survive until the spring of 2021 and for the losses to be as small as possible - Mayor Frankovic emphasized. He added that it is not realistic to expect cruise guests by the end of this year.
Direct contacts have been established with global airlines such as British Airways and Jet2com, and negotiations and elaboration of financial parameters are underway, said Mayor Frankovic. He pointed out that the city budget earns 70 percent of funds directly from tourism, and the rest is also indirectly related to tourism, which is why it is financially justified in this situation to invest in a subsidy for international flights.
Deputy Tepsic reminded that the Tourist Board has launched a promotional campaign, and various benefits for this year's visitors are being prepared in the form of discounts for visits to Lokrum, City Walls, Dubrovnik card, as well as free programs of cultural institutions.
The importance of implementing the prescribed protection protocols was emphasized in order to avoid potential infection and endangerment of the currently good epidemiological situation. Tourist guides are still waiting for the recommendations of the Croatian Institute of Public Health.