Tourasia taps emerging Polish market to SE Asia

Koh Phi Phi, Thailand

Tourasia, one of Switzerland’s major specialised tour operators to Asia, expects to produce more arrivals from Poland to South-east Asia this year, having opened a subsidiary in Warsaw last month on December 1.

Managing director Stephan Roemer noted that four out of five most popular Asian destinations for Polish, in arrivals figures, are in South-east Asia. The top five, in order, are Thailand, Vietnam, Sri Lanka, Singapore and Indonesia (Bali).

“If you look at the official figures there are considerable increases, particularly to Thailand and Sri Lanka. They report increases of high double digits,” he said.

“Poland is a young market with growth potential. The population is 40 million and at present, 10-20 per cent have the comparable buying power of a market like Germany. That equals to a market size of four to eight million potential travellers. The number of travellers is growing. The annual growth in GDP is approximately four per cent, among the highest in Europe,” Roemer assessed.

Though young, Roemer said Polish are seasoned travellers who want to go farther. Tourasia is targeting the luxury segment with its refined concierge service, own deluxe vehicles and innovative roundtrips. But it will also have “an adequate offer for the tourist class segment”, he said.

Its new office, centrally located in Warsaw, is manned by four staff, led by Piotr Chojnowski, whose career rose from product director at TUI Poland to CEO of Onholidays before joining Tourasia.

“We are setting up our infrastructure and will start the promotions and sales in spring (March/April),” said Roemer.

This isn’t the first time Tourasia operates in foreign markets. The company also owns Tischler Reisen in Germany, another major specialised tour operator to Asia.

In Asia, Tourasia operates its own network of DMCs in Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam and the Philippines under the name All Asia Exclusive, which also caters to Asian outbound markets. Presently it employs 32 employees in Switzerland and over 140 in Asia.

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