Market analysis

THE FOUNDATION

National Trend 2022-2023

In 2022, ISTAT reports an annual increase in tourist arrivals, especially among foreigners (+84.8%), while for residents, the growth is at +12.9% compared to 2021.

Even the preliminary data for 2023 (January-February) seem to confirm the definitive recovery of the sector (+45.5% in total arrivals compared to the same two months of 2022), with a significant increase in both foreign arrivals (+70.5%) and domestic arrivals (+28.8%). If the data for the coming months continue to confirm this trend, it will be possible to record in 2023 a full recovery – and perhaps even surpassing – pre-pandemic levels.

+ 84 ,8 %

the presence of foreigners in Italy compared to 2021.

+ 12 ,9 %

presence of Italian tourists compared to 2021

+ 45 ,5 %

total presences for the January-February 2023 period compared to the same period in 2022

The weddings in our country

Italy can successfully compete in the global market to position itself as a preferred destination for the celebration of weddings and private ceremonies.

Italy is already a significant attraction for the wedding industry due to the marketability of its rich artistic, monumental, and natural heritage, as well as its extraordinary capacity to provide high-quality products and services. Furthermore, the offer is being restructured: more Italian regions are organizing themselves to intercept and meet the demand, proposing new destinations alongside well-established ones.

 

THE ANALYSIS PRESENTED HERE ALSO UTILIZES DATA FROM THE PERIOD BEFORE THE PANDEMIC.

The system of products and services related to weddings, whether connected to the celebration itself (destination weddings) or honeymoon travel, positions Italy as an absolute leader on the global stage.

In particular, the first element, destination weddings, is very interesting concerning this initiative. It aims to carry out a dual action: an internal one, studying and understanding the local phenomenon to activate all the necessary activities to build a system/product, and an external one, towards the complex international market, to instill the belief that Italy is the unbeatable destination for celebrating any occasion.

International statistics provide an interesting perspective: globally, it is possible to observe that destination weddings, weddings celebrated outside the usual place of residence, can make up as much as one-fifth of all weddings held. The case of the United States is particularly interesting, where 21% of marriages, some 2.4 million a year, are celebrated in a destination other than the place of residence. Of these, 28% have Europe as their target continent, to which future couples often look in search of their origins.

In 70% of cases, the couples have an annual income of about $110,000 and spend a total of $16 billion a year on destination weddings. For 35.5% of these, both the couples and the guests, destination weddings are an opportunity for a vacation (resulting in an increase in per capita spending).

The role of social networks in destination weddings deserves special mention. Social networks are playing an increasingly strategic role in destination selection and event sharing related to weddings. In 2018, Pinterest alone registered a 219% increase in generating destination ideas. About 80% of couples are influenced by social networks.

All this data would be encouraging if it weren't for the fact that this specific sector of the tourism industry is among the hardest-hit by the pandemic. The U.S. and UK markets represented a significant 39.6% of the total wedding tourism value before the pandemic. Wedding specialists operating in these two markets lost 69.7% of events and 78.9% of revenue in 2020. Of the canceled weddings, 27.9% were supposed to take place in Italy. In our country, where the wedding market recorded extraordinary numbers in 2019 (1,783,000 arrivals generated by organizing 9,018 weddings for foreigners, with a turnover of 486 million euros), it marked a -87.3% drop in arrivals and an even more significant -92.7% drop in revenue compared to the previous year, amounting to 35.5 million in revenue generated from 226,000 arrivals (Italian Destination Wedding Tourism Observatory, curated by JFC).

ORIGIN MARKETS: PROSPECTS AND INDICATIONS FOR PROMOTION

In 2019, the country from which most couples and their entourage arrive, as mentioned above, is the United Kingdom (23.1%): almost one in four couples. They are followed by weddings of residents in the United States (16.5%) and Germany (10.7%). Weddings of couples from the Netherlands (5.8%), France (5.7%), Switzerland (5.6%), Australia (4.5%), Canada (4.2%), and Russia (3.5%) follow.

In China, around 10 million weddings are celebrated every year, and almost 60% of future Chinese brides and grooms dream of celebrating their wedding in a foreign destination. In particular, in the China of millennials (about 16% of the population), destination weddings to Europe, and especially Italy (in the art cities of Rome, Florence, and Venice), have become a steadily growing trend with an average expenditure of 84,000 euros per wedding. Although there is no official data, simply by cross-referencing these known figures, the potential market size is evident and even greater than the data from the U.S. market alone reported above.

The analysis of trends in the behavioral customs of the new Chinese generations reveals the desire to follow the Italian style in wedding organization. Particular attention is paid to choosing Italian brands for the couple's attire, having the banquet prepared by an Italian chef, the floral arrangement designed by an Italian florist, the wedding ceremony designed by an Italian art director, music performed by an Italian band, photography and video produced by an award-winning Italian photography studio, an Italian wedding planner, and finally, a honeymoon in Italy, if not the wedding itself. In general, for foreigners who choose Italy for their wedding, noble palaces overlooking the Venice lagoon top the lists of preferred locations. Then comes Tuscany with its numerous botanical gardens, ancient villages in central Italy, lakes in northern Italy, and Rome, the Eternal City. The Chinese love our cathedrals, and a church wedding is part of a very Western, very Italian style, although often unbaptized Chinese couples cannot receive the church's blessing.

The information and data reported above confirm that, given that the wedding segment is of interest to tourism industry operators but also involves a wide range of operators, its revival can be an important catalyst for the economic recovery of various Italian production sectors.

Made in Italy is synonymous with luxury and beauty. Italian style enjoys trust and admiration, particularly evident in the widespread belief in the individual capabilities of Italians, considered extremely creative, ingenious, and endowed with a unique cultural, historical, and traditional heritage. Italy is a great laboratory of creativity.

Choosing to get married in Italy is tied to elements of undisputed global appeal: the fact that Italy can express "strong charm and recognized beauty" is the primary factor influencing most couples' choice, accounting for 31.1% of the total.

It would therefore be desirable to promote the Italian system, focusing on this market segment not only in countries where there is already a consolidated market (UK and USA) but also in potentially interested countries.

The factors to leverage in encouraging this choice include 'food and wine culture and typical products' (15.8% of preferences) and the fact that Italy is a 'romantic destination' (11.7%). For many, getting married in our country 'represents a dream' (9.4%), but there are also 'family reasons and connections' (8%). Other reasons for choosing Italy as a wedding location are the undeniable value of 'historical and cultural aspects' and the 'beauty of the landscape,' with respective shares of 6.6% and 6.3%.

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GREEN WEDDINGS ETS FOUNDATION - Piazza del Biscione, 95 - 00186 RomR (RM)
President Armando Soldaini – Phone. +39 3898481904 - E-mail: info@greenweddings.it

Established on 09/08/22, registered in Rome on 09/16/22 - cap. soc. €832,037.00 i.v. Tax code 96541680581
Registered at RUNTS, legal personality recognized with DRL n. GO2925 dated 14/3/2022 Ateco code 960909

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