After a decline of 22.8 percent last year, the transport turnover of the Graubünden mountain railway companies from the start of the season to December 31, 2021 almost reached the level of 2019 again. The strategy of controlled opening has proven its worth.
Despite Corona and the not always ideal weather conditions, the domestic guests in particular have remained loyal to Graubünden. According to the mountain railway monitor of the Bergbahnen Graubünden industry organization (BBGR), 28.6 percent more guests than in the same period last year and 23.2 percent more than the five-year average enjoyed snow sports in the great outdoors. There was an increase of 27.8 percent in transport sales (5-year average 18.3 percent). The mountain railway monitor from BBGR covers 90 percent of the traffic revenue and the frequencies (first entries) of the Graubünden mountain railway companies. Gastronomy sales also developed positively. This is not surprising, however, as the catering trade was closed in the same period last winter. The guests had to be satisfied with take-away solutions without terraces and it was freezing cold. However, it is encouraging that the guests have a certain amount of catching up to do in terms of gastronomy.
Optimal start of the season
The positive development comes to a large extent from the time before Christmas. It is primarily due to the excellent snow sports conditions, the early school holidays in some cantons and the possibility of using the holiday home as a home office. The basis for this positive development was the early snowfall and low temperatures, which made the technical snowmaking possible. The actual holidays were average. The reason for this is the moderate old year weather. The turn of the year was forgiving and ended with excellent snow sports conditions, which was also reflected in an increased number of guests.
Strategy proves its worth
According to Martin Hug, President of Bergbahnen Graubünden (BBGR), the behavior of the guests has shown how important exercise in the great outdoors is, especially in the Corona period: "The guests were very disciplined, appreciated and demonstrated the protection concepts through their independent actions grateful for the possibility of an orderly and controlled snow sport experience ". Snow sports take place in the open air, where the virus is of much less importance than if a large number of people stayed in closed rooms for a long time. The 2G rule is therefore sensible for the interiors of restaurants. For the mountain railway industry it is important that the public sector, should further measures be necessary in the next few days or weeks, not be guided by the number of cases alone. but is primarily based on the occupancy of the intensive care places. The mountain railways in Graubünden are the engine of winter tourism and are of course ready to react flexibly to the epidemological situation and to make their contribution to overcoming the crisis "underlines.