Accommodation facilities in Bulgaria expecting to suspend ops increase – survey

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The percentage of accommodation facilities in Bulgaria that expect to suspend work in the short term due to the coronavirus crisis rose on a monthly comparison basis in September, the country’s statistical office said.

Some 24.6% of the managers of accommodation facilities in Bulgaria expect to temporarily halt their operations in a month’s time, the National Statistical Institute (NSI) said in a statement on Monday, citing the results of a survey it conducted during October 5-23 among more than 2,800 managers of hotels, camp sites, holiday villages and other accommodation establishments.

Last month, 23% of accommodation facility managers said that they expect to halt operations in the short term.

The results of the latest survey also indicate that the majority of accommodation facilities, 35.1% plan to continue with their operations, albeit at a reduced capacity. This percentage is relatively unchanged compared to last month. However, the percentage of accommodation facilities that intend to continue to operate as usual has decreased to 34.6% in September, from 36.4% in August.

Some 4.2% of the respondents expect to close their business in a month’s time, the same percentage as in the previous two months.

More than half of the respondents, 53.2% saw a decline in their operating revenues on a monthly comparison basis in September, while 36.9% reported no change. According to NSI’s previous poll, 34.8% of the managers booked higher operating revenues in August.

The majority of the managers, 46.1%, expect that they will be able to service up to 50% of their operating expenses with own funds in the following month, while 20.1% say they will be unable to service any expenses with own funds. As many as 33.2% say they will be able to service all of their operating expenses in a month’s time, compared to some 34.3% in August.

According to NSI’s survey, there is an increase in the number of accommodation facilities which have chosen to lay off employees, or put them on paid or unpaid leave in the month under review, in order to cope with the crisis. At the same time, as many as 24.4% of accommodation facilities benefited from the government’s wage support measures in September, up by 3 percentage points on a monthly comparison basis.

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