Tourist vouchers not to be expanded to other services

Ljubljana – The Economy Ministry is not considering expanding the services for which tourist vouchers, a type of state aid for tourism amid the epidemic, can be used, despite calls to expand them beyond bed and breakfast to include various attractions, hospitality services, or tickets.

“This measure will not be expanded, tourist vouchers remain as they were legislated,” State Secretary Simon Zajc said on Thursday speaking at a news conference of the Association of Regional Tourist Guides of Slovenia.

The association would like tourist vouchers to also be used for guided tours.

The vouchers were introduced with the third economic stimulus package in the spring of 2020 as state aid for the heavily-affected tourism and hospitality industry.

Every adult resident received EUR 200 in an electronic form, while children and youth under 18 received EUR 50, which translated into almost EUR 357 million.

Between 19 June, when they began to be used, and 28 November, vouchers totalling EUR 127.9 million were redeemed. The rest can be used until the end of 2021.

In many tourist areas, such as the coast, the mountains and spas, the vouchers helped save the summer season, whereas urban areas and sights which are usually most interesting for foreign tourists hardly benefited from them.