We will remember 2020 for a long time to come as the year of unprecedented challenges that have brought many changes to each of our lives. Our staff at Kaunas City Economic Development, Tourism Promotion and International Marketing Agency Kaunas IN started its year with big ambitions and plans to spread the word about new opportunities in the city, and welcomed the end of it, like the final stop of a rollercoaster. We experienced both manifestations of optimism at the end of the first quarantine and challenges in implementing ideas that would help the most vulnerable sectors and activities to survive.
To read more about the year 2020 in the business department of our company, click here. And now, let’s talk about the tourism team, the one which experienced probably the biggest challenges and changes.
According to Inga Pažereckaitė-Kalėdienė, the Head of the Tourism Department, the staff reacted very quickly to the dramatically changed situation, directing communication to Lithuanian and nearby markets (Latvia, Estonia, Poland, Finland) and paying great attention to digital routes, inviting to travel around Kaunas to get to know the unseen sides of it by travelling individually.
During the warm season – between the two quarantines – the city invited foreign and Lithuanian travellers to get acquainted with the message Kaunastic Summer and Kaunas residents were encouraged to become tourists in their city. The campaign ran through tastes, discoveries, entertainment, and various other activities.
In response to the changing tourist habits, the platform of digitized thematic routes Kaunastika.lt invited to travel safer, more modern, and more convenient at the end of 2020. Currently, the platform offers 24 routes from the It’s Kaunastic series, which are quickly and conveniently accessible via phone or computer. The routes (more to come!) encourage you to travel individually, to create a personalized route that works for you, listen to an audio guide, or discover the city on your own.
Regardless of the difficult situation, last year both local and nearby market travellers were eager to take holidays and were ready to travel in line with safety recommendations and opportunities. During the first three quarters of 2020, according to the data of the Department of Statistics, Kaunas was mostly visited by travellers from Lithuania (113,238), Estonia (6,495), Germany (6,380), Latvia (5,968), and Ukraine (5,876).
So, while this exceptional year has made us all pause and think, it has also taught us to adapt to a changing environment and make quick and unprecedented decisions. However, perhaps the most important thing we have learned in our activities in 2020 is to stay optimistic. Travellers and tourists, although, with new habits, will travel again!
Title photo by A. Aleksandravičius