It was held across four venues in Poland: Legia in Warsaw, Wisla and Cracovia in Krakow and Zaglebua Lubin in Lubin (The stadium guide, 2012). AT a cost of PLN 4.3bn, two of these stadiums were built new for the event; with both host cities spending a combined total of €30bn on infrastructure prior to hosting the event. €1.7m was also spent to guarantee free public transport – included in the €17bn spent on 80 vital investment projects, which is recorded as the largest logistical operation ever carried out in Poland. This also led to a 88.9% high satisfaction rate by fans for services provided in Poland. Additional income from tourism as a result of hosting the tournament was estimated at €1.922m in Poland with long-term economic effect at a 1.3% GDP growth.
There were also little issues faced with only 6 racist incidents, 739 health and safety issues (though non fatal) and 1360 tonnes of waste which remained less than aimed for (UEFA EURO, 2012).
sWOT analysis of tourism and events in poland
A variety of events are held throughout the year, many of which are recognised across both Europe and the world (Polska, 2016a). One mega-event hosted in Poland was The EURO 2012 which lead to recently well developed transport links – stated to be the largest logistical operation ever carried out in Poland (UEFA EURO, 2012). The event also brought lots of positive attention to Poland during its success.
Domestic tourism is strong which is evident by the domestic expenditure and hotel night statistics previously mentioned (World travel and tourism council, 2015).
The environment of Poland has given opportunity for many events such as a national ski rally and the Piast Race to take place – bringing in tourists and interest from many specialists in this area (Polska, 2016a).
Poland doesn’t have a strong share of international tourist arrivals or receipts compared to other European countries like France and Spain (UNWTO, 2016). In terms of efficiency, Poland is one of the most energy and material consuming economies in the European Union. However, national waste management plans have been put in place to meet its new objectives to improve this problem (EEA, 2015).
Another weakness to Polish tourism is being placed 42nd in the world ranking of travel and tourism in 2014. This shows Poland has a lot to improve and work on to become a top world tourist destination. Also, in 2014, Poland was below 50% of the world average ‘Travel and tourism’s direct contribution to GDP’ at US$ 9.3bn in comparison to US$19.4bn or the Europe average of US$16.6bn (World travel and tourism council, 2015). This shows that Poland needs to improve its tourism spending to be up with the average or better.
The Carpathian mountain area is seen as a ‘new destination’ and can be a strong natural and cultural asset and is an opportunity for bringing in curious and interested visitors (Carpathian convention, 2013).
International tourist arrivals appear to be growing continually to Poland – leading to additional flights being added to Poland from various destinations including Belfast to cater for the increase in international tourists (UNWTO, 2016). This would be a great opportunity for Poland to flourish as it currently relies heavily on domestic tourism.
Poorly planned and implemented tourism infrastructure, tours and tourist activities in the Carpathian mountain area can have a serious impact on the fragile ecosystems, as well as on the communities that inhabit mountain regions (Carpathian convention, 2013). International tourist receipts decreased from 2013 to 2014, and though 2015 is not included, this could be seen as a threat suggesting a decreased interest in Poland to tourists (UNWTO, 2016).
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