Travel restrictions to foreign countries have significantly increased domestic tourism in Estonia, for example, almost as many people traveled to Saaremaa by ferries in July compared to a year ago. In addition to Estonians, more Latvians and Lithuanians are on the move in Saaremaa this year.
"Every weekend, these numbers are rising and approaching last year. The share of Estonians is very large. And quite a lot of Latvians and Lithuanians have come, which we have not noticed so much in previous years. Finns have started to come and really, the number of passengers is increasing," he said. Sirle Arro, Head of the Marketing and Communication Department of the Port of Tallinn.
Tourism entrepreneur Alver Sagur confirmed that domestic tourism really works this year and that its close neighbors are also actively on the move.
"This corona is such a bad topic for us, but I would say that it now brought an Estonian to Saaremaa and made an Estonian move around Estonia. The Estonian now also sees how beautiful Estonia really is," he said.
Tourist Margo, who went from Tallinn to Saaremaa, stated that the coronavirus interfered with vacation plans so much that it could not go outside Estonia.
"We wanted to go to Montenegro this year, but we can't. There's quarantine and quarantine everywhere. And that's why we drove here. We've been here before, about 15 years ago, and now we decided to come here again," said Saulius, a tourist from Lithuania.
Compared to spring, at least for the time being, the hosts of Saaremaa do not panic much, so they have [[[[[]]]]] special reason to attract customers at discounted prices.
"We have had a occupancy rate of 100 percent for a number of days. Summer in general is completely comparable to previous years, there is not much difference. Perhaps the main difference is that if earlier people planned their vacation a month or two in advance, People are more spontaneous in 2006 and one or two weeks are planned, booked and arrived, "explained Liisi Kuusk, GOSPA 's sales manager.
"This week we are here, but next week we will have a holiday in camps around Riga. We do not plan to travel abroad this year," said Roman, who traveled from Latvia to Saaremaa.