Kraków is famous among tourists for its history, architecture and culture, while the surrounding areas offer many natural landmarks and other attractions. What is more, Kraków and the whole Małopolska region offer unique opportunities for the MICE industry – especially for British companies, thanks to the large number of visitors from the United Kingdom.
Still growing in popularity among tourists
Even though the COVID-19 pandemic has made a considerable dent in the tourism statistics, the overall trend for Kraków is very promising. Over the last 15 years, the number of visitors coming to the capital of Małopolska has doubled from around seven million to fourteen million. Kraków managed to break its own record of tourist arrivals every year in the 2010s, and we can expect that with the travel restrictions loosening up, the numbers are going to start increasing again.
While a large part of the arrivals are from Poland itself, Kraków is one of the most attractive destinations for foreign tourists as well. It is worth noting that in 2020, over 18% of visitors from other countries came from the United Kingdom. British people are the largest group of international guests in Kraków, which means that there is great business potential there for travel companies from Great Britain.
A modern and open city
One of the reasons for Kraków’s attractiveness is the combination of history and modernity. On one hand, there are numerous important landmarks from centuries past, like Wawel Castle, the Main Square and the Barbican, among many others. On the other hand, the city is a perfect place for modern business to thrive. Kraków is responsible for the most employment in the business sector in Poland (23.1%) and provides the most office space for rent – over 1.6 million square metres. The former Polish capital is also open to people from all countries; openness to multiculturalism has been a major part of the city’s policy since the start of the Open Kraków programme in 2016.
What is more, it is in Krakow that the 61st ICCA Congress will be held (ICE Krakow Congress Centre, 6-9 November 2022)! The ICCA Congress is one of the biggest and most important events in the global meetings industry, which gives access to the knowledge of experts, companies and associations from all over the world.
Not only Kraków – opportunities in Małopolska
The area around Kraków is called Małopolska (or Lesser Poland), and the whole region is quite valuable for both businesses and visitors. There is a lot of investment from international companies from all sectors developing branches in and around Kraków. Tourists can enjoy other fascinating cities as well, like Zakopane and Oświęcim with their own fascinating history and architecture. The southern part of the region is where you can find the breathtaking Tatra Mountains, which are just two hours away from the city.
Tourism during the COVID-19 pandemic
Because of the increased risk while travelling and the restrictions imposed by governments and health organisations, the number of visitors dropped by over 40% in 2020. The change was especially noticeable in the statistics for international guests. Despite that, the numbers still look very promising, and the pandemic has not stopped the tourism industry from investing in Kraków. In 2020 alone, there were 460 new accommodation facilities registered within the city, while only 181 were removed from the records.
The current number of hotel and non-hotel facilities is almost two thousand, offering a total of 54,350 beds for tourists. Those numbers allow Kraków to easily provide for guests, even in the case of large business conferences.
Workshops for British companies – a great place to start investing in Kraków
The tourism statistics combined with the large number of attractions in Kraków and Małopolska provide many very good reasons to consider the region as a place to expand a tourism-related business. Entry can be made significantly easier thanks to events dedicated to foreign companies looking to invest in Małopolska. Road shows are one of the most interesting examples – workshops are a unique opportunity to meet partners from Poland and learn more about the business landscape there.
All tourism companies looking to expand into Kraków and Małopolska are welcome at the workshops taking place in London (8th March 2022) and Manchester (9th March 2022). Feel free to register and take the chance to leverage the region’s popularity with tourists and businesses: https://www.moulden-marketing.co.uk/articles/events/experience-kraków-visit-małopolska-march-2022/.