Switzerland Tourism has been operating in Poland since 2000. In 2023 Polish guests generated over 200.000 overnights with increase of over 11% in 2023 compared to 2019. Hereafter you find the most important market information.

Directory

  1. Know the basics
  2. Bi-monthly market update
  3. Localized annual plan 2024

Know the basics

AddressSwitzerland Tourism
Al. Ujazdowskie 27
00-540 Warsaw
Market ManagerAdriana Czupryn
Contact+48 606 717 234
adriana.czupryn@switzerland.com

Meet the Team

The team of 2 members based in Warsaw, Poland, office within the Swiss Embassy.

Research and reports

  • ST market research page –– here
  • ST Research Report 2023 –– Download here
  • ST TMS 2017 –– Download here

Market activities

Last updated: mm/dd/yy by initials

Market update and reporting of finalized activities 2023

Click here for an overview slide for each finalized activity in the current year. ((Will follow))

Localized annual plan 2024

Last updated: 01/26/2024 by CZ

Market Situation

Parliamentary elections in October 2023 ended the 8-year-reign of the far right PiS under their Party boss Jarosław Kaczyński and Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki. Former Prime Minister Donald Tusk, who then became the head of the European Council in Brussels before returning to Polish politics, won the elections with his Civic Coalition, that integrates centrist, environmental and business friendly parties. In order to govern, he had to form a broader coalition with some left leaning parties and another centrist union. The government has been in place since Mid-December, returning Poland to the international arena as a more reliable partner. Also, by taking back many of the former government´s judicial reforms, that have been deemed anti-democratic by the EU, Brussels is starting to „unfreeze“ billions of Euros in aid for Poland. The Political situation, however, i still difficult because of President Andrej Duda, who will remain in power almost another two years. He supports Kaczyńskis PiS (of which he was a member himself before becoming President) and has been on a collision course with the new government from the beginning. In Poland, the President has the right to veto any bill. The veto can be overturned by at least 60% of the members of Parliament, but the new governing coalition doesn´t have 60%. There have already been speculations of possible snap elections. i

Economy

The overall economic development in Poland slowed down in 2023 – as it did in most other European countries. While at the beginning of the year, analysts still had expected a GDP growth of 1,5% year on year, estimates are now standing at just 0,2% for 2023. In 2022, the economic engine had been humming at 5,3% GDP growth. The number for 2023, barely above zero, ist he worst GDP number since Poland´s joining the European Union. The IMF has its prediction of economic growth for 2024 in Poland at 2,8% at the moment.

The major concern going into 2023 was the inflation rate, which stood at 14,4% for the year 2022, after just 5,1% in 2021. For 2023, the average inflation was 11,4%, but with a clearly falling trend in the second half of the year. For December 2023 alone, the rate stood at 6,2% year on year. For the first months of 2024, economists expect a further fall. The Polish National Bank surprised many international analysts by starting to lower interest rates to bolster economic growth right after the inflation rate went below 10% in the early months of autumn.

With these numbers, Poland is not in the group of countries in Central and Eastern Europe with the best growth rate nor the best inflation. Average wages rose 9,6% year on year in December 2023 to 8033 PLN (1730 CHF) per month – more than the 6,2% inflation rate for December – giving employees a real wage growth after real losses in 2022 and the first half of 2023. For 2024, analysts expect wage growth to remain high – probably above 10%. With an inflation rate of possibly around 4%-5%, real wage growth is expected to continue.

Unemployment remained very low throughout the year, ending at 2,7% in December 2023, in spite of the fact that roughly a million people from Ukraine (and some from Belarus) are registered in Poland. The low unemployment leads to a lack of skilled employees in some sectors.

With the election of the new government in October, the Polish currency regained some ground after weakening in the months before. While the rate for 1 CHF for a short period of time even surpassed the mark of 5 PLN, it now stands at roughly 4,65 PLN, making travel to other countries somewhat more affordable.

Travel industry

Overall, the high inflation period following the Coronavirus pandemic was harmful especially to SME companies. However, in the travel industry, there has not been a surge in suspensions or bankruptcies. With the opening of all international markets, demand for travel rose to pre-pandemic levels.

Switzerland, which had become a surprise hit in the winter of 2020/2021 because of ist policy to allow travel in spite of the pandemic, remained a popular travel destination for Polish people during all seasons of the year, continually beating overnight statistics from the year before and also from 2019 and earlier.

We are continuing to work very closely with tour operators and travel agencies, in particular with roughly a dozen of them who added Switzerland to their portfolios during the pandemic. Especially small tour operators are an engine of growth in the Polish travel industry.

The MICE sector – especially for high-end-customers – plays a increasingly more important role  

SWISS basically returned to pre-pandemic flight connections between Poland and Switzerland with two-three flights daily Warsaw-Zurich, three per week between Wroclaw and Zurich, six weekly from Krakow to Zurich, as well as a connection twice a week from Gdansk to Zurich (summer, planned extension for winter).  

The Polish airline LOT also connects Zurich and Geneva with Warsaw (twice a day). WizzAir has a three times a week-flight connection between Warsaw and Basel.

Travel behavior

Poles tend to plan their travels individually. They like to travel with their own car or – as a rather new development – with a camper, caravan or camping bus.

The overall trend goes in the direction of shorter but more frequent travels – a development that has been even more strengthened by the period of high inflation in 2022 and the first half of 2023.

This doesn´t mean, though, that the people are spending less money on their foreign travels. While there are no full statistics yet for the whole year, the Polish Chamber of Tourism reports that right from the beginning of 2023, the number of reservations of trips through travel agencies have been positively surprising.

The most popular summer vacation destinations were Turkey, Greece, Egypt, Bulgaria, Tunisia, Spain, Cyprus and Albania, followed by Italy and Croatia.

According to the Tourism Chamber, most travellers made the reservation for their trips more than 3 months in advance. While most Polish people travel during the vacation months of July and August, there has been a clear and observable trend for travelling in September.

While making reservations abroad, Poles overwhelmingly chose 4 or 5 star hotels. Therefore, campaigns like „Swisstainable“ are being received positively. The most popular travel duration was 7 to 8 days. The average spending level on a vacation travel stood at roughly 8700 PLN (1870 CHF).

The share of young travellers, who prefer shorter but more frequent trips (for example city breaks), is especially high in Poland. Interestingly, a new study of consumer confidence at the beginning of 2024 found that optimism about their own financial future among younger Poles is surprisingly high, including the willingness to spend more in the upcoming year.

Around 5 million Poles claim to like skiing and/or snowboarding. The number of bicycle enthusiasts is also quite high.

In Poland, most travels take place during the summer vacations that last 9 weeks from the end of June till the beginning of September. After that, there are no school vacations until the Christmas break and then two weeks of winter/ski holidays in January and/or February (differing according to the region). There is also a short Easter break. The special position in the travel calendar has “long May weekend” – May 1st and 3rd are bank holiday.

Personas

The Polish market focuses primarily on the personas Max and Pat. Find more information about the personas here.  

Key Performance Indicators

Final 2022Budget 2023
Bed nights hotels193’070173’752
Turnover Total (CHF)31 Mio. 28 Mio.
Growth 2022 – 2023-10.0%
Campaigning & Activation*
·      Top-Marketing Contacts133’394’764100’000’000
·      Customer reactions142’350140’000
·      Tracked Sessions on MyS.com per year276’361300’000
·      Bouncing Rate on MyS.com25.3%n/a
·      Engagement Rate on MyS.comn/a45.0%
·      Engagement Rate on Social Media0.40%0.35%
Media work (KMM)*
·      Top-Coverage articles240220
·      Top-Coverage media contacts107’063’996105’000’000
·      Qualified Interactions with KMM90100
Trade (KAM)
·      Influenced overnight with tour operators 104’648100’000
·      Influenced revenue with tour operators 16’743’68016’000’000
·      Specific group and FIT packages6465
·      Qualified Interactions with KAM242250
·      Meetings: RFP’s n/an/a
·      Influenced revenue business eventsn/an/a
·      Qualified Interactions with business accountsn/an/a
Partner cooperations
·      Investments tourism partners66’64950’000