Ministry to use certification to support quality of tourism services

The Ministry of Transport, Construction and Regional Development wants to evaluate the quality of Slovak hotels, restaurants and other tourist facilities using a national quality assurance system. Depending on the quality of provided services, operators in the tourism sector could be awarded a gold, silver or bronze certificate. State Secretary of the Transport Ministry František Palko delivered this information within the introduction of the so-called Tourism Development Strategy until 2020 on Monday, July 8. This measure should be introduced in 2016.

The Ministry of Transport, Construction and Regional Development wants to evaluate the quality of Slovak hotels, restaurants and other tourist facilities using a national quality assurance system. Depending on the quality of provided services, operators in the tourism sector could be awarded a gold, silver or bronze certificate. State Secretary of the Transport Ministry František Palko delivered this information within the introduction of the so-called Tourism Development Strategy until 2020 on Monday, July 8. This measure should be introduced in 2016.

Palko believes that the quality of services is one of the main criteria on the basis of which tourists decide where to go. The plan is to establish the Transport Ministry as the certification authority. "We cannot compel private entities to participate in this system," he said, as quoted by the SITA newswire. He thinks that competitive pressure will be sufficient motivation for tourism operators. The transport department also suggests rewarding operators – i.e. hotels and travel agencies – who manage to keep tourists for longer than five days in their facilities in Slovakia. "The premise is that on average one in five such multi-day stays would be supported by €30 for visitors from visa-free countries and by €60 for visitors from countries with a visa requirement," says the department the strategy document. The ministry estimated annual costs of this initiative at €10.5 million (based on 2012 data). Another €200,000 would be required for administration and inspections. Assuming a 10 percent growth of performance in tourism, the department expects a positive financial effect amounting to €160 million.

(Source: SITA)
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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