Wealthy Americans refrain from traveling to Paris after Israel-Hamas war breaks out

Wealthy Americans are holding off on booking trips to Paris as the Middle East wars and their broader effects reduce demand for tourism.

Sales of premium class tickets between New York and Paris rose in the three weeks ending October 7 compared to the same period in 2019, the last normal year before COVID-19 disrupted air travel patterns. This was an increase of 44% compared to the previous year. That figure dropped to 4% in the three weeks after the attack, according to travel analytics firm ForwardKeys.

“This figure means that many wealthy Americans who can afford to fly premium or higher have booked less travel between New York and Paris since the conflict erupted,” said Juan Gomez, head of market intelligence at ForwardKeys. It shows that they are holding back.” Premium class tickets refer to premium economy class, business class, and first class.

Since the Oct. 7 attack on Israel by Hamas, France has raised its terrorism alert to the highest level, a decision the U.S. Embassy has also emphasized, urging French citizens to “close their surroundings” when traveling domestically, especially when traveling. “Please continue to be vigilant,” he urged. Avoid areas where demonstrations are taking place.

In France, on October 13, a teacher was stabbed to death in what was believed to be an Islamist terrorist attack carried out by President Emmanuel Macron. The airport, the Louvre Museum, the Palace of Versailles and other landmarks were evacuated following the bomb warning.

France is the most visited country in the world and a major shopping destination with some of the world's largest flagship stores in its capital. Luxury goods giants LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton SE and Hermes International are headquartered in Paris.

Claudia D'Alpizio, a partner at Bain, told Bloomberg that “we're hearing from travel companies and luxury hospitality companies that cancellations are starting to appear in European capitals” amid concerns about terrorism. Dalpizio works with clients in the luxury industry.

In fact, these cancellations are not limited to the French capital. Jacques Ezon, founder of luxury travel agency Embark Beyond, said his company canceled 53% of its trips from the U.S. to Europe scheduled for the next two months, including itineraries to Paris, London and Rome. He said it had become. “The main reasons why customers cancel are fear of anti-Semitic attacks, as well as Islamophobia, fear of being stranded overseas in the event of war, and confusion everywhere,” he said. “It's the discomfort of being 'at risk' and the fear of putting so many people at risk.” People overseas are not only anti-Semitic, they are also anti-American. ”

In a conversation at the World Travel Market convention in London in early November, Maria Elena Rossi, marketing director for the Italian Tourism Board, also told Bloomberg that the Middle East war has caused cancellations in Italy's hospitality industry. has occurred and is a cause for concern. .

This observation is echoed by luxury Paris hotels such as the Plaza Athénée and Le Meurice, which have seen a flurry of cancellations from U.S. guests since the attacks, a person familiar with hotel reservations told Bloomberg this month. I'm here. The group that runs Plaza Athénée and Le Meurice, which represents The Dorchester Collection, declined to comment.

The luxury palace hotel Le Bristol also experienced a “small wave of cancellations” that lasted for about 10 days starting October 7, said Catherine Odour Baudry, head of sales and marketing. New bookings offset these cancellations, she said, and overall October performance was described as “record.” By nationality, Americans are the hotel's largest market source, accounting for approximately 35% of its customers.

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