Air transport accessibility in business tourism destinations in the COVID-19 pandemic – A Central and Eastern Europe perspective
Keywords:meeting industry, MICE, air transport, air accessibility, COVID-19 pandemic
The purpose of this article is to examine the role and indicate the changes caused by the pandemic in the differentiation of the level of air transport accessibility for meetings in selected countries of Central and Eastern Europe. Using a network analysis of air connections between the selected largest airports in Central and Eastern Europe (over 1 million passengers), the accessibility of the most important cities in the meetings industry was investigated. The research is based on data sources (Eurostat, Scyscanner.com, International Congress and Convention Association – ICCA reports) in pre- and post-COVID times. The analysis is based on seven cities that host the largest number of association meetings. The study identifies three key observations: slow recovery of lost organizational powers, qualitative changes in the processes of meetings organisation, which is connected with the third conclusion – the dominant position of Warsaw as a regional hub for meeting participants in this part of Europe.
Aburumman, A. A. (2020). COVID-19 impact and survival strategy in business tourism market: The example of the UAE MICE industry. Humanities and Social Sciences Communications, 7(1), 1–11. https://doi.org/10.1057/s41599-020-00630-8
Alananzeh, O., Al-Badarneh, M., Al-Mkhadmeh, A., & Jawabreh, O. (2019). Factors influencing MICE tourism stakeholders’ decision making: The case of Aqaba in Jordan. Journal of Convention & Event Tourism, 20(1), 24–43. https://doi.org/10.1080/15470148.2018.1526152
ATAG. (2021). Covid-19 Analysis Fact Sheet. Retrieved November 25, 2022 from https://www.atag.org/our-publications/latest-publications.html
ATAG. (2022). Tourism enabler. Air Transport Action Group. Retrieved November 25, 2022 from https://aviationbenefits.org/social-development/tourism-enabler/
Borodako, K., & Rudnicki, M. (2014). Transport accessibility in business travel – A case study of Central and East European cities. International Journal of Tourism Research, 16(2), 137–145. https://doi.org/10.1002/jtr.1908
Borodako, K., Seweryn R., Berbeka J., Niemczyk A., Davidson R., Jakóbik K. (2019). Assessment of the economic impact of the meetings industry on the City of Krakow. Argumenta Oeconomica, 43(2), 191–211. https://doi.org/10.15611/aoe.2019.2.08
Borodako, K., Berbeka, J., Niemczyk, A., & Seweryn, R. (2022). The meeting industry in Krakow 2021. Fundacja Uniwersytetu Ekonomicznego w Krakowie, Kraków.
Brock, T. (2022) How much airline revenue comes from business travelers? The Investopedia Team. Retrieved November 15, 2022 from https://www.investopedia.com/ask/answers/041315/how-much-revenue-airline-industry-comes-business-travelers-compared-leisure-travelers.asp
Brugnoli, A., Dal Bianco, A., Martini, G., & Scotti, D. (2018). The impact of air transportation on trade flows: A natural experiment on causality applied to Italy. Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, 112, 95–107. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tra.2018.01.010
Bueno, A. R., Urbistondo, P. A., & Martínez, B. A. (2020). The MICE tourism value chain: Proposal of a conceptual framework and analysis of disintermediation. Journal of Convention & Event Tourism, 21(3), 177–200. https://doi.org/10.1080/15470148.2020.1740851
Czerny, A. I., Fu, X., Lei, Z., & Oum, T. H. (2021). Post pandemic aviation market recovery: Experience and lessons from China. Journal of Air Transport Management, 90, 101971. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jairtraman.2020.101971
Disimulacion, M. A. T. (2020). MICE tourism during Covid-19 and future directions for the new normal. Asia Pacific International Events Management Journal, 1(2), 11–17.
Duval, D. T., & Schiff, A. (2011). Effect of air services availability on international visitors to New Zealand. Journal of Air Transport Management, 17(3), 175–180. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jairtraman.2010.12.006
Efthymiou, M., Arvanitis, P., & Papatheodorou, A. (2016). Institutional changes and dynamics in the European aviation sector: Implications for tourism. In N. Pappas & I. Bregoli (Eds.), Global dynamics in travel, tourism and hospitality (pp. 41–57). Hershey, Pennsylvania, IGI Global.
Eurostat (2022). Air passenger transport by main airports. Retrieved November 25, 2022 from https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/databrowser/view/AVIA_TF_APAL__custom_3727837/default/table?lang=en
Geurs K. T., & van Wee B. (2004). Accessibility evaluation of land-use and transport strategies: Review and research directions. Journal of Transport Geography, 12(2), 127–140. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jtrangeo.2003.10.005
Geurs, K. T., & Ritsema van Eck, J. R. (2001). Accessibility measures: Review and applications. Evaluation of accessibility impacts of land-use transportation scenarios, and related social and economic impact. RIVM rapport 408505006.
Graham, A., & Dobruszkes, F. (Eds.). (2019). Air transport – A tourism perspective. Elsevier.
Halpern, N., & Graham, A. (2015). Airport route development: A survey of current practice. Tourism Management, 46, 213–221. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tourman.2014.06.011
Halpern, N., & Graham, A. (2016). Factors affecting airport route development activity and performance. Journal of Air Transport Management, 56, 69–78. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jairtraman.2016.04.016
Hazledine, T., & Collins, S. (2011). Paying the pilot? The economics of subsidising international air travel to small remote island nations with large diaspora. Journal of Air Transport Management, 17(3), 187–194. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jairtraman.2010.12.008
Henderson, J. (2009). Transport and tourism destination development: An Indonesian perspective. Tourism and Hospitality Research, 9(3), 199–208. https://doi.org/10.1057/thr.2009.1
ICCA. (2017). ICCA Statistics Report. Country & City Rankings 2017. International Congress and Convention Association, Amsterdam.
ICCA. (2018). ICCA Statistics Report. Country & City Rankings 2018. International Congress and Convention Association, Amsterdam.
ICCA. (2019). ICCA Statistics Report. Country & City Rankings 2019. International Congress and Convention Association, Amsterdam.
ICCA (2021). ICCA Ranking 2021. Destination Performance Index. International Congress and Convention Association, Amsterdam.
Ivanova, M. G. (2017). Air transport–tourism nexus: A destination management perspective. Zangador.
Jo, D., Park, H. Y., Choe, Y., & Kim, D. K. (2019). Destination-selection attributes for international association meetings: A mixed-methods study. Journal of Destination Marketing & Management, 13, 61–72. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jdmm.2019.05.005
Koo, T. T. R., Tan, D. T., & Duval, D. T. (2013). Direct air transport and demand interaction: A vector error-correction model approach. Journal of Air Transport Management, 28, 14–19. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jairtraman.2012.12.005
Koo, T. T., & Papatheodorou, A. (2017). Spatial evolution of airports: A new geographical economics perspective. The Economics of Airport Operations (pp. 235–259). Emerald Publishing Limited, Bingley. https://doi.org/10.1108/S2212-160920170000006010
Lohmann, G., & Duval, D. T. (2014). Destination morphology: A new framework to understand tourism–transport issues? Journal of Destination Marketing & Management, 3(3), 133–136. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jdmm.2014.07.002
Lohmann, G., & Duval, D. T. (2015). Tourism and transport. In C. Cooper (Ed.), Contemporary Tourism Reviews (Vol. 1, pp. 129–182). Oxford: Goodfellow.
Lohmann, G., & Vianna, C. (2016). Air route suspension: The role of stakeholder engagement and aviation and non-aviation factors. Journal of Air Transport Management, 53, 199–210. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jairtraman.2016.03.007
Marais, M., du Plessis, E., & Saayman, M. (2017). Critical success factors of a business tourism destination: Supply side analysis. Acta Commercii – Independent Research Journal in the Management Sciences, 17(1), 1–12. https://doi.org/10.4102/ac.v17i1.423
Marques, J., & Pinho, M. (2021). Collaborative research to enhance a business tourism destination: A case study from Porto. Journal of Policy Research in Tourism, Leisure and Events, 13(2), 172–187. https://doi.org/10.1080/19407963.2020.1756307
Martín-Cejas, R. R. (2010). Tourism growth versus airport environmental capacity: An application of Ramsey pricing to Spanish tourist airports. Transportation Research Part D: Transport and Environment, 15(3), 175–178. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.trd.2009.12.004
MasterCard Economics Institute. (2022). Travel 2022: Trends & Transitions. A look into today’s travel, trade-offs and tailwinds. Retrieved November 15, 2022 from
Nepal, S. K. (2020). Adventure travel and tourism after COVID-19 – business as usual or opportunity to reset? Tourism Geographies, 22(3), 646–650. https://doi.org/10.1080/14616688.2020.1760926
Njoya, E. T., Semeyutin, A., & Hubbard, N. (2020). Effects of enhanced air connectivity on the Kenyan tourism industry and their likely welfare implications. Tourism Management, 78. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tourman.2019.104033
Papatheodorou, A. (2021). A review of research into air transport and tourism: Launching the Annals of Tourism Research Curated Collection on air transport and tourism. Annals of Tourism Research, 87, 103151. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.annals.2021.103151
Poulaki, I., Papatheodorou, A., Panagiotopoulos, A., & Liasidou, S. (2022). Exclave accessibility and cross-border travel: The pene-exclave of Ceuta, Spain. Tourism Geographies, 24(1), 152–176. https://doi.org/10.1080/14616688.2020.1786153
Ripoll-Zarraga, A. E., & Raya, J. M. (2020). Tourism indicators and airports’ technical efficiency. Annals of Tourism Research, 80. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.annals.2019.102819
Rogerson, C. M. (2015). Unpacking business tourism mobilities in sub-Saharan Africa. Current Issues in Tourism, 18(1), 44–56. https://doi.org/10.1080/13683500.2014.898619
Rwigema, P. C., & Celestin, R. P. (2020). Impact of Covid-19 pandemic to meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (Mice) tourism in Rwanda. The Strategic Journal of Business and Change Management, 7(3), 395–409.
Skyscanner (2022). Meta-search engine Skyscanner. Retrieved October 12, 2022 from www.skyscanner.com
Spasojevic, B., Lohmann, G., & Scott, N. (2018). Air transport and tourism – A systematic literature review (2000–2014). Current Issues in Tourism, 21(9), 975–997.
Spasojevic, B., Lohmann, G., & Scott, N. (2019). Leadership and governance in air route development. Annals of Tourism Research, 78, 102746. https://doi.org/10.1080/13683500.2017.1334762
Toth, G., & David, L. (2010). Tourism and accessibility: An integrated approach. Applied Geography, 30(4), 666–677. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.apgeog.2010.01.008
Tuan, L. T., Rajendran, D., Rowley, C., & Khai, D. C. (2019). Customer value co-creation in the business-to-business tourism context: The roles of corporate social responsibility and customer empowering behaviors. Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Management, 39, 137–149. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhtm.2019.04.002
Union of International Associations (UIA). (2020). Survey on International Meetings Issues – 2020. Brussels. Retrieved November 25, 2022 from: https://uia.org/sites/uia.org/files/survey/UIA-Meetings-Survey-2020.pdf
United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO). (2017). UNWTO tourism highlights. Geneva.
United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO). (2020). UNWTO global guidelines to restart tourism. Madrid.
United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO). (2022). International tourism and COVID-19. UNWTO Tourism Data Dashboard. Retrieved November 25, 2022 from https://www.unwto.org/tourism-data/unwto-tourism-dashboard
United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO). (2022). UNWTO World tourism barometer. Retrieved November 25, 2022 from: https://www.unwto.org/taxonomy/term/347
Vlassi, E., & Papatheodorou, A. (2020). Towards a method to assess the role of online marketing campaigns in the airline–airport–destination authority triangular business relationship: The case of Athens Tourism Partnership. Air transport and regional development policies (pp. 227–239). Routledge.
World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC). (2019). Tourism economic impact, WTTC, World. London.
Wu, J., Rajesh, A., Huang, Y. N., Chhugani, K., Acharya, R., Peng, K., ... & Mangul, S. (2022). Virtual meetings promise to eliminate geographical and administrative barriers and increase accessibility, diversity and inclusivity. Nature Biotechnology, 40(1), 133–137.
How to Cite
Copyright (c) 2023 Micha? Rudnicki, Krzysztof Borodako
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.