[:en]Poland – Italy 2: the dark side of a love story[:]


Like all love stories, even the one between Poland and Italy has its dark side. We saw in the previous post: the Peninsula is the first holiday destination of Poles from 5 years, at least. The other positions are instead object of a fierce competition among several countries

The GUS (Central Statistical Office of Poland)  data consider the Polish holiday trips as a whole in particular they don’t distinguish between organized and independent holidays.

The very satisfactory data for Italy on holiday trips as a whole, are much less if the attention is focused on the organized tourism only. Few data explains better than 1000 words. Look at the following chart:

Rate of Growths 2018-2017  of Polish tourism market as a whole and the organized segment.

In general and the share which has spent holiday in Italy

Sources: GUS, PZOT (Polish Tour Operator Association)

In the case of organized tourism, Italy has not only failed to keep pace with the growth of this market segment, which has grown by 20% from 2017 to 2018, but has even had a negative performance: -3 %.

Obviously the market share is affected by this trend: while the global share is equal to 11%, in the organized tourism it is less than half: 5.2%, which places Italy in 6th place.

But who are the competitors of Italy? In the first 5 positions there are: Greece, that dominates the market with a share of 31%, having benefited better than others countries of the Middle Eastern turmoil, it’s followed at a great distance by Turkey (14%), Spain (10%) , Egypt and Bulgaria

Market share of the main destination Countries of Polish organized tourism. 2018

Source: PZOT

Why Italy shows this disparity of situation between organized tourism and individual tourism? Answering this question is out of the goals of this blog, but I can provide two information useful for the search for the causes and perhaps also the for the action of Italian tourist companies interested in the Polish market:

  • Italy does not have a flag destination, look at the list of the top 20 destinations preferred by Poles traveling with organized tourism:


Antalya (TR) 11 Bodrum (TR)
2 Heraklion (GR) 12 Marsa Alam (ET)
3 Burgas (BG) 13 Varna (BG)
4 Korfu (GR) 14 Teneryfa (E)
5 Zakynthos GR) 15 Fuerteventura (E)
6 Rodos (GR) 16 Majorka (E)
7 Hurghada (ET) 17 Saloniki (GR)
8 Chania GR) 18 Sharm El Sheik (ET)
9 Kos (GR) 19 Gran Canaria (E)
10 Tirana (AL) 20

Sycylia (I)


  • The holiday prices of Italy aren’t the critical issue. The following chart shows that exists a direct and very precise relationship between “Price per Client” and “Price per Booking”. As the former grows, the latter increases proportionally.

Main destination countries per „Price per Client” and „Price per booking”;

Currency: Polish Zloty; 2018

Source: PZOT

Moreover the “Price per Client” of Italy is in the middle of the ranking (about 2200 pln i.e around € 523), more or less the same level of Egypt. Consequently, also the „Price per booking” is in the middle of the scatter.

Instead the prices of Spain (2827 pln i.e about € 673) are much higher, as whose of Turkey, Cyprus and Greece. Therefore the problem should not be sought in the level of the prices charged by the Italian tourist companies but more probably in the price/service ratio and in the marketing action. This one, instead of fully exploiting the potential of the „Love Story between Poland and Italy”, rests on it as the „old” lovers sometimes do.

Author: Gilberto Zangari

Feel free to report the previous post but please quotes: OUTgoing POLAND, The Polish Outgoing Tourist Workshop