Allegrini 2018

Wine tourism: after the 2020 crisis, 8 out of 10 wineries in the world indicate a decade of growth

Winetourism.com survey: 2020 registered enormous losses, -50% to -80%. Pre-Covid19 levels will return in 2022
Wine tourism: in a hot air balloon over the Caprai brand vineyards in Montefalco

This past year, 2020, was obviously a really bad year for wine tourism, in Italy and worldwide. As a matter of fact, it was almost zero, at least in Italy, except for the summer break. Nevertheless, wineries all around the world that have been focusing more and more on hospitality and experiences in the vineyard as well as in the wine cellars are still optimistic. Even though they expect that a return to pre-Covid19 levels will not happen, realistically, before 2022, as many as 80% foresee growth in their territories in this decade. In a nutshell, these are the results of the survey that the specialized portal Winetourism.com carried out at the end of November 2020, collecting responses and moods of over 1.200 wineries from 34 countries, of which 38% from Italy, 14.8% from France and 10.5% from Spain.
Overall, looking at 2020 which has just ended, most companies (53%) have lost between 50% and 80% of their wine tourism turnover relative to 2020. A large number of companies have reported even higher losses, while 31% reported losses between -10% and -50%. Of course, in the general disaster, international tourism has collapsed, as 8 out of 10 wineries lost between 50% and 90% of foreign visitors. The situation, in 2021, will most likely improve only slightly, and as has often been mentioned, it will be necessary to rethink the wine tourist offer and target it to national and local tourism. However, optimism for the future still prevails. Generally, 31% of wineries believe that they will return to normal in 2021 (29% of Italian wineries), 58% estimate a return to pre-Covid19 levels in 2022, while only one in 10 wineries foresees a return to normal only from 2023 and beyond. As far as investments are concerned, 32% of operators expect to invest more from now on, 31% plan to maintain the same pre-Covid19 levels, and only 11% will invest less. There is, instead, a fairly large percentage, equal to 26%, who still do not have clear ideas about investments.
There is another interesting aspect that stems from the fact that over half of the companies (55.7%) get their biggest income from comes from direct sales, and this indicates how much we can still grow in terms of offer and diversification of experiences in the wineries. 37%, instead, indicate wine tastings, visits to the company and other experiences as their primary source. 56% of wineries have emphasized that the typical visitor is above all the one who consumes wine on an occasional basis, rather than a more sophisticated and engaged consumer (14%). What will the catchword of the future be? Innovation, in terms of supply, digitization and ability to adapt to a demand that, at least in the short term, will be different from pre-Covid19, and more subject to fluctuations, linked not only to the will of wine tourists, but also to the evolution of the international framework. And, first of all, of course, we must look at the possibility to return to travel around the world.

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