In June, the British travel company Inghams set up a new charter flight connection between London and Ljubljana that will connect the British and Slovenian market once per week. The charter flights will operate during the prolonged summer season between Gatwick airport in London and Jože Pučnik airport in Ljubljana from the end of May to September 2013.
It is a pilot project carried out by the British tourist industry after a long time period. On the basis of current ticket reservations, the organisers estimate that the decision to set up this charter connection was correct and if successful Inghams plans to continue organising charter flights to Slovenia in the future.
The British market activity in Slovenia is extremely dependent on airline connections; therefore, it would also be necessary to increase the number of direct airline connections from other airports outside London in order to ensure a new positive trend of arrivals from this second largest European emitive market.
The British market has been traditionally very important for Slovenian tourism and, with regard to the number of overnight stays, British tourists are ranked in seventh place. However, the trend of overnight stays from the British market has been fluctuating in the past few years, mostly because of unsettled airline connections. In 2011 growth was slightly below one per cent, while in the previous year the number fell by six per cent. In 2012 the market experienced a four per cent growth. In the first months of this year, the number of overnight stays grew in comparison to last year. In May alone there were 19 per cent more overnight stays by British guests in Slovenia than in May 2012.