The Swiss are increasingly staying within Switzerland for their holidays, with cantons Ticino and Graubünden seen as particularly attractive. Islamic countries such as Egypt, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates are losing their appeal.
The heatwave and beautiful weather last summer meant many people decided to chill out at home, according to the TCS travel barometer 2019external link, published on Monday by the Touring Club of Switzerland.
Italian-speaking Ticino and Graubünden in eastern Switzerland topped the attractivity ranking, followed by Italy, which just pipped canton Valais.
These destinations were followed by Spain, Portugal, Germany, Austria and France. Then came non-European destinations Australia and New Zealand, the Caribbean, the United States, Thailand and South Africa.
Islamic countries were less attractive than in previous years for Swiss tourists, who nevertheless said they were less afraid of terrorist acts and reported a general feeling of safety.
That said, political events such as the “yellow vest” protests in France and the tense situation in South Africa influenced the choices of tourists. These two countries dropped down the list.
While 46% of respondents said travelling was a central part of their life, 27% said travelling was a luxury that they could barely afford.
The internet plays a growing role in holiday planning, the study found, with 78% of respondents saying they made use of online information about tourism or security, up from 71% last year.
Almost 60% planned their itinerary based on comments made on reservation platforms.
The representative survey was carried out by the gfs.bern instituteexternal link between January 21 and February 11. A thousand people over 18 were questioned by telephone.