Speaking on C News and BFM TV on Saturday, French tourism minister Jean-Baptiste Lemoyne said he wanted to encourage more tourists, especially French tourists, to go to the resorts to make up for lost earnings.
Together with businesses in affected ski resorts, he said he would look at the impact of the loss of UK business in ski resorts over the next few weeks and implement “bespoke” measures to help those affected.
#Tourisme ⛷ | Pour faire face à la perte de la clientèle 🇬🇧, j’ai réuni ce matin les acteurs de la #montagne. Nous sommes et resterons aux côtés des professionnels touchés. Et vous qui cherchez un séjour dans les semaines à venir, n’hésitez pas à faire le choix de la montagne🇫🇷! pic.twitter.com/KakF2fsk2h
— Jean-Baptiste Lemoyne (@JBLemoyne) December 18, 2021
However, he did not specify what these might be.
“We are going to look at the figures…and we will do what we need to cushion the impact,” he said, explaining that they needed to analyse the situation first as not all resorts and businesses would be affected equally by the loss of British custom.
For example, British tourists made up a higher percentage of the total clientele in some resorts, such as Val d’Isere, Courchevel and Meribel, he said.
To stem the spread of the new Omicron coronavirus variant, new rules banning holiday travel from the UK came into force on Saturday.
Under France’s new rules, travellers need to show a compelling reason for travel between the two countries.
The only exemptions for needing a compelling reason are for French and European travellers returning to France and British passengers heading in the other direction.
Lemoyne also noted that there could be fewer Dutch tourists in French resorts this year. On Sunday, the Netherlands entered a lockdown until at least mid-January to slow the spread of Omicron.
Dutch tourists typically make up around 5 percent of French ski resort visitors, the minister said.