Zoltán Guller, Head of the Hungarian Tourism Agency, said domestic tourism has been properly restored since the coronavirus brought it to a halt, while the return of international visitors to Hungary is slowly under way.
Guller told Kossuth Radio that the summer season started with all freedoms restored in Hungary, giving the country at least a month to weeks’ head start over the rest of Europe. He said the hospitality industry generated turnover of HUF 110 billion in July, as against HUF 87 billion in the same period last year. The number of guest nights increased by 62 percent this June compared with last year and 5.5 million guest nights were spent in July, 17 percent more than the previous record high for the month. Guller said planned tourism developments had not been waylaid by the coronavirus pandemic, with an unprecedented sum of several hundred billion forints spent in the sector. Some HUF 150 billion have been allocated for applications to be invited for the development of spas in Hungary, he added.
In 2019, foreigners made up 93 percent of tourists in Budapest, he said, adding that it was an unsustainable model. The task of the government is to send the message to citizens in rural Hungary that it is worth visiting Budapest. The upcoming August 20th national holiday celebrations, the Pope’s planned visit in September and the hunting expo next year will serve as good opportunities, he added.