Norwegian tourism is thriving after a weaker krone made the famously expensive Nordic country cheaper to visit and a heat wave in southern Europe increased the allure of a cooler climate.
(Bloomberg) — Norwegian tourism is thriving after a weaker krone made the famously expensive Nordic country cheaper to visit and a heat wave in southern Europe increased the allure of a cooler climate.
Overnight stays in the Nordic nation by foreigners in June reached a high for that month with 1.62 million visitors from abroad, after a similar record was registered in May, according to data by Statistics Norway on Friday. The total number of overnight stays including domestic visitors was also the highest ever recorded for June, the office said.
“The weakened krone and travel-loving Norwegians and foreigners have given the hotel industry a good start to the summer,” Sindre Torgals, a senior adviser with the statistics body, said in a statement.
A weakening of the Norwegian currency for most of this year has proven a boon for the hospitality industry that already returned near its pre-Covid peaks last year, luring foreigners with its scenic fjords, mountains and glaciers. The industry is even using it as a marketing tool.
“Norway is no longer one of the most expensive countries in Europe,” the country’s official travel guide Visit Norway says in a campaign that started in March, seeking to attract tourists from countries including Germany and neighboring Sweden to take advantage of the weak krone. Norway has a reputation for exorbitant prices.
Germans had the most overnight stays in June, followed by the Dutch and Americans, the statistics body said. On the flip side, the tourism lobby’s surveys show many Norwegians are opting for a domestic holiday as krone makes travel abroad more pricey for them.
Read More: Norway’s Economy Bounces, Backing Norges Bank’s Hawkish Stance
While the krone remains the second-worst performer this year in the G-10 space of major currencies behind the yen — mainly due to a declining interest-rate differential with other central banks and a weaker oil price — it has been the biggest gainer for the last month. That’s after the Norwegian central bank raised rates by half a point and data showed continued economic expansion.
The number of overnight stays by foreigners is the highest since at least 2010, and likely the highest ever, according to the statistics office.
Norway has been untouched by a heat wave that’s plagued the southern parts of the continent, increasing its attractiveness as a destination.
Rea More: Record Heat in Europe Sends Travelers Heading for the Nordics
(Updates with comment in third paragraph. A previous version corrected spelling of currency in headline.)
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