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An advertising campaign with the slogan #ParisWeLoveYou has been created to try and revive bookings to the French capital following November’s terrorist attacks.
The Paris regional tourist board has joined forces with AccorHotels and state railway operator, SNCF, to fund the promotion.
The campaign will feature a “selfie race”, with visitors to Paris encouraged to post their photographs on the ParisWeLoveYou Facebook and Twitter accounts.
SNCF is offering 22,000 cut-price tickets for international rail travellers, while Accor is cutting the price of rooms in its Paris hotels by up to 30% over the next month. Other hotels are reducing their prices further.
“We’re offering our rooms for €100 instead of more than €200,” a spokesman for the high-end Crystal Hotel on the Left Bank told The Times. “And still the customers are not coming. It’s dramatic.”
Tourist industry officials initially estimated that it would take about six months to overcome a slump in bookings after the attacks that killed 130 people in Paris in November.
Now they say it will be much longer with fears exacerbated by a succession of reports that French police have foiled imminent terror attacks in Paris.
Paris has suffered a particular drop in the number of Japanese, Italian, American and German visitors.
Officials say that the claim by US Republican presidential candidate, Donald Trump, that Britain and Europe were “not safe places” did nothing to restore confidence.
International visitors generated revenue of €21 billion for the Paris region tourist industry last year.
Only a significant influx of football fans coming to watch the Euro 2016 championship in France this summer could yield a similar figure this year.
But taxi drivers yesterday threatened to block stadiums as part of a dispute with Uber and other mini-cab apps.
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