Agadir: the debate on the Scandinavian market revived

During the ONMT regional tour on Tuesday in Agadir, professionals expressed the wish to see the destination reinstate its winter positioning by targeting the Scandinavian market which, previously, offered an occupancy rate in winter similar to that of summer. During the 7th stopover of the regional tour of the Moroccan […]

During the ONMT regional tour on Tuesday in Agadir, professionals expressed the wish to see the destination reinstate its winter positioning by targeting the Scandinavian market which, previously, offered an occupancy rate in winter similar to that of summer.

During the 7th stopover of the regional tour of the Moroccan National Tourist Office (ONMT) in Agadir, three questions came up during discussions with professionals from the first seaside resort of the kingdom. These are the recovery of the winter positioning of the destination, the integration of the seaside resort of Taghazout into the Agadir brand and the thorny issue of air travel. Today, the ONMT, through its strategy of reconquest declined at the regional level, wants to allow the destination to recover its market shares lost after the Covid-19 crisis through the anchoring of its seaside brand and by focusing promotion on priority source markets, in this case France, Germany and the United Kingdom. According to the office, the destination Agadir has experienced over the past five years (before the Covid-19), an average increase in arrivals of 8%, while overnight stays have evolved by + 5%. The French and German markets remain the two leading suppliers of tourists for the Souss-Massa region with around 51% of the combined market share. Other markets are emerging, such as the United Kingdom with an increase in overnight stays of 8% in 2019 compared to 2018. But professionals are keen on the Scandinavian market, mainly Norwegian, Danish and Swedish flows which, previously, recorded a occupancy rate in winter similar to summer. Regarding the Taghazout resort, which is also one of the three axes of the destination strategy, the ONMT wants to bring innovation to the destination by arousing new interest around the Agadir brand and by strengthening it. through the enhancement of its wealth.

Agadir-Taghazout: complementarity or competition?
Once the New Integrated Tourist Resort of Taghazout (NSTIT) completes its full opening (out of 9 scheduled establishments, 4 hotels are already operational), its share, which was around 7% in 2019, will be revised upwards. Note that by referring to statistics from the Regional Tourism Council (CRT) of Agadir-Souss-Massa, the seaside resort of Agadir hosted, before the Covid-19 crisis, more than 1.1 million tourists annually (2019 and 2018). Nevertheless, some professionals have expressed their fear of seeing the Taghazout resort nibbling away the market shares of the gadirie seaside resort because they have the same characteristics, although the offer of the first should be both different and complementary to the second. . With regard to air transport, the ONMT intends to reinforce, after the revival, air links from the main emitting basins. While waiting for the integration of the specificities of each region at the end of this tour, especially in relation to the targeted markets, the air and the promotion, the ONMT foresees the number of 13 million tourists aiming at the Morocco destination in by 2023. Indeed, from 9.37 million tourists in 2012, arrivals in Morocco recorded a continuous increase to reach 12.93 million tourists in 2019. For the destination Agadir, ONMT, in partnership with Royal Air Maroc (RAM), set up, last month, 4 new direct air routes connecting Agadir to London, Brussels, Manchester and Lyon, at the rate of 2 frequencies each.

Resumption: the nationals in the lead, followed by the MRE and TES
Still according to ONMT projections, it is the rate of return of nationals that will reach the highest rate (65%) in 2021. It will be followed by Moroccans living abroad (MRE) and foreign tourists. of stay (TES), respectively up to 45 and 35%. For the year 2022, the recovery will be 100% for nationals against 90 and 70% for MRE and TES. With regard to the scenarios for the 2021 season, the ONMT has already secured 1.1 million overnight stays, i.e. 330,000 visitors secured at major Online Travel Agencies (OTAs) as part of partnerships with tour operators ( TO). Concerning the reconquest strategy (ATL), this is first of all based on the access of tourists to the national territory through support and relaxation of access conditions (PCR test). Next comes the restructuring of air seat capacity. Added to this is the consolidation of the relationship with TOs, through securing partnerships with these travel wholesalers, and the launch of promotion in favor of tourists as end customers.

Promotion and securing of air seats
In terms of marketing, the ONMT also plans two promotional campaigns per year for nationals and MREs as well as for source markets. At the same time, the office is in the process of securing air seats with TOs for the commercial component as part of its competitive strategy (3D) based on distribution (air, TO and OTA), digital with the launch of its own digital platform dedicated to the various targeted segments and deals by market. It should be noted that, based on studies carried out by the ONMT on the different markets in terms of segmentation, a branding of the Moroccan offer was carried out, broken down into 3 distinct brands. A brand for domestic tourism, which will target nationals and MREs, a brand for international tourism aimed at world travelers and, finally, a Corporate ONMT brand targeting tour operators, airlines, travel professionals. tourism and the media.

Yassine Saber / Eco Inspirations

Janelle B. Smith

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