Tyrol experiences US boom

Tyrol has registered a strong increase of tourists from America.Tourism marketing officials in the western Austrian province said today (Weds) preliminary figures for the current skiing holiday period show that the number of overnight stays booked by people from the United States climbed by around 24 per cent compared to the previous winter.They added that the number of overnight stays by holidaymakers from the United Kingdom and several countries in Eastern Europe (EE) was likely to be higher this winter than in the 2009/2010 skiing holiday season.Preliminary figures for Austria’s largest skiing and snowboarding region also show that the number of Austrian guests improved while fewer holidaymakers from Germany and the Netherlands picked Tyrol this winter.Tyrolean tourism marketing chiefs nevertheless said the majority of hotel managers and restaurant managers were “engaged and in a realistic and good mood” as far as economic developments were regarded.The western province is becoming more and more popular among wealthy Russians and the former Soviet country’s new middle class. Around 40 per cent of Russians coming to Austria on vacation choose the Alpine region. Tyrol recorded 433,000 overnight stays by 55,000 Russians last winter.Tyrol, other provinces and representatives of the federal tourism industry are set to present final figures for this winter in April since the current month will be considered as well.The tourism industry plays an important role in the Austrian economy as it is in charge of around 18 per cent of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP). There are around 1.1 million hotel beds in Austria’s nine provinces.Meanwhile, a survey by the Institute for Leisure and Tourism Research (IFT) and car club ÖAMTC revealed that 29 per cent of Austrians have no holiday plans this year. Especially people with a low salary would not go on vacation, according to researchers.