Airolo-Pesciüm: winter 20/21 very complicated
Valbianca SA informs that, due to the numerous restrictions aimed at combating the spread of the Coronavirus, the 20/21 winter season has been very complicated, with a decrease in first passages of 40%.
Valbianca SA reports that in the 2020/21 winter season, which started on the 12th of December and ended on Monday the 5th of April, there was a 23% decrease in season pass sales compared to the 2019-20 season. This is attributable in particular to the great uncertainty regarding the progress of the pandemic and the opening of ski resorts at the beginning of the season.
In the opening months, there was also a sharp decrease in first passages (-40%) compared to the 2019-20 season. In particular, there was a lack of local customers, although the decrease was marked across all areas of origin.
In addition to the fear and discomfort caused by the restrictions, Valbianca also blames the sharp drop in visitors on the forced closure of the gastronomy from the 22nd December and the mandatory reservation of the cable car for most of the winter, which deterred skiers from spending a day in the snow.
Almost all primary, middle and high schools in the canton of Ticino cancelled their skiing weeks, which usually involve many pupils travelling to Airolo for their mountain classes. The number of groups and ski clubs that have chosen the Airolo-Pesciüm slopes, which are always highly appreciated for their quality, to train and generally practice their activities has also logically decreased. However, it should be noted that also this winter several teams (Switzerland, Germany, Australia, Ukraine and Great Britain) have chosen Airolo as a base for their Freestyle training.
Once again this year, as a result of the extraordinary situation, there has been a sharp increase in the purchase of online ski passes on TicketCorner (+18%), while combined ticket and train (RailAway) sales have fallen slightly.
In addition to the drop in seasonal and visitor sales, a major blow to Valbianca was the closure of restaurants and terraces (except during Carnival week). With only takeaway food service available, Valbianca's profits fell by 66%.
This season represents a very delicate moment for Valbianca SA but the company looks forward with hope to the future; in the short term to the next summer season, which will start on Saturday the 26th of June, and in the medium to long term to the start of important investment projects such as the freestyle centre, the modernisation of the lifts, the new collaboration with USTRA in the perspective of the construction site for the second Gotthard tunnel and the technical collaboration with Ofima in the maintenance of the cableways.
Finally, Valbianca SA would like to thank its loyal customers for the support and trust they have always shown.