Holiday parks in Belgium recorded good occupancy rates this summer, mainly thanks to Belgians who decided to spend their holidays in their own country, according to a survey by Belga news agency.
Landal Green Parks, which rent chalets in the Ardennes and the Limburg province, were fully booked during the summer weeks, Marketing Director Lizzy Keizer said. “In fact, that happens every year at summertime,” she said, but this year more Belgian clients opted for a park in their own country.
There was similar satisfaction at Center Parcs, which runs parks along the Belgian Coast and in the Kempen region, Limburg and the Ardennes. “The occupancy rate is good and it seems we are going to do even better than last year,” said Communications Officer Marthijn Tabak, noting that more Belgians are spending their holidays at home.
“The advice to travel in their own country is being well heeded,” he said. A similar trend has been noted in the Netherlands.
However, clients hesitated for a long time before making reservations, according to both companies, and there has also been a delay in autumn bookings. “We are still convinced things will catch up,” Tabak said. The fact that more people are waiting until the last minute to do their bookings means there are fewer good deals to be had.
Roompot, which is in the same line of business as the other two operators, notes that occupancy levels are similar to last year’s, while bookings for next year are coming in faster than usual.
“No doubt the good weather of these past weeks has something to do with it, but also the fact that the choice was limited because of the high occupancy,” Roompot spokesperson Baptiste Van Outryve said, adding that the company plans to expand its operations in Belgium next year.
While the holiday parks are enjoying a good summer, this does not compensate for the losses incurred earlier this year when they had to remain closed for months.
The rental of holiday homes outside the parks is also performing well. Here again, this is due mostly to Belgians who have opted for a "staycation." The Maisons Belvilla rental company, for example, has noted a 19% drop in the number of Dutch nationals renting accommodation in the Belgian Ardennes.
The Brussels Times