The Italian Almanac
A summer vacation is out of the question for nearly half of all Italians, most of whom simply can't afford to get away this year, a new report suggested. The research by the association of Italian hoteliers, Federalberghi, revealed that 46% of Italians will spend the summer at home this year. Of these, 55% cited financial reasons in general, while 47% said they simply didn't have the money to go on holiday.
Federalberghi blamed the ever-widening impact of the financial crisis in Italy for the forecast. It said the situation had deteriorated further over the last 12 months, pointing out that just 43% of the Italian public had been deprived of a summer holiday last year. For the rest of those stuck at home this summer, "family reasons" and "work" were cited by just under one in five each, while 16% blamed poor health.
Commenting on the report, Federalberghi President Bernabo Bocca described the predictions as not only disappointing for the individuals involved but worrying for the tourist industry in general. "One Italian in four is not going on holiday this summer because they don't have the money," he said. "As a consequence of this, Italian vacation travel this summer will remain at the same levels as 2009. "We are forecasting a 20% increase in revenue but this is not from an increase in tourism but from the increase in the average number of nights people are staying, up from 10 to 12, and because of the growing costs of travel and transport within Italy".
Bocca pointed to the latest figures released by national statistics institute, Istat, indicating that the price of domestic travel was rising steadily within Italy. Such increases make summer vacations impossible for many in Italy, where people traditionally opt for domestic holidays over cheap package deals abroad.