Strong kroner deters Norway tourist spending / News / The Foreigner

Strong kroner deters Norway tourist spending. Europe’s economic woes are hitting tourism in Norway because of the krone’s high exchange rate. Over the last two years, the kroner’s stability compared to the euro has made Norwegian holidays up to 15% more expensive for foreign tourists. With fears that the financial meltdown in the PIIGS countries (Portugal, Iceland, Ireland, Greece and Spain) may spread further into the Eurozone, the outlook for Norwegian tourism is bleak. “The tourism industry is very sensitive to currency fluctuations. There is certainly cause for concern for the industry if the Norwegian krone over time continues to be so strong it is today,” says Per Arne Tuftin, tourism director of Innovation Norway.

expensivenorwegiantourism, substandardservice, hightouristpricesnorway



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Strong kroner deters Norway tourist spending

Published on Friday, 15th July, 2011 at 19:01 under the news category, by Gareth Corfield.

Europe’s economic woes are hitting tourism in Norway because of the krone’s high exchange rate.

Norwegian currency
Norwegian currency
Photo: chezzzers/IStockphotos


Over the last two years, the kroner’s stability compared to the euro has made Norwegian holidays up to 15% more expensive for foreign tourists. With fears that the financial meltdown in the PIIGS countries (Portugal, Iceland, Ireland, Greece and Spain) may spread further into the Eurozone, the outlook for Norwegian tourism is bleak.

“The tourism industry is very sensitive to currency fluctuations. There is certainly cause for concern for the industry if the Norwegian krone over time continues to be so strong it is today,” says Per Arne Tuftin, tourism director of Innovation Norway.

With one euro now worth 7.84 kroner, having reached a high of 8.19 last year, the situation may appear to be grim. Oslo was labelled the world’s most expensive city in a survey by the Swiss bank UBS in 2009, but the most recent cost-of-living survey carried out by consultants Mercer saw the Norwegian capital drop to 15th place.

The figures and the reality are at odds with each other, however. Even in 2010 tourists had begun complaining that the poor standard of service in Norway did not meet their expectations in relation to what they had paid for.

Whilst holidays like cruises with Hurtigruten are typically booked far enough in advance to insulate tourists from currency fluctuations, foreigners still worry about spending any more money than they absolutely need to.

“I definitely use less money on this trip than I have done on previous holidays to Norway,” said Susan Shawre, a Scottish tourist travelling around the Norwegian coast with her husband. “Luckily the trip was paid for long ago, and we get three meals on board daily. I dare not think about what expenses we would have had if we had to buy food and drink every day.”

Experts have been wondering whether Norway’s refusal to accept the euro has significantly harmed the tourism industry. For British tourists, the pound’s sharp drop in value over the last two years has made the prospect of holidaying in Norway an unaffordable prospect.

“I go ashore at every port, but just to look around. The poor exchange rate combined with the high prices in Norway, means that I cannot afford to buy anything. It is simply unacceptable,” said British tourist David Brett to the regional newspaper Adresseavisen.



Published on Friday, 15th July, 2011 at 19:01 under the news category, by Gareth Corfield.

This post has the following tags: expensivenorwegiantourism, substandardservice, hightouristpricesnorway.





  
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