Fears that leaving the EU will mean the loss of the ability to move their UK staff and resources easily around Europe has caused ski companies to cut an average of 30% of their workforce, including ski reps and chalet hosts,since 2016, a new survey has revealed.
Ski companies have also reduced the number of holidays available and increased prices, it suggested.
The survey of 65 travel companies was conducted in November by Seasonal Businesses in Travel (SBiT), an organisation representing over 200 outbound British tour operators (the vast majority of which are ski operators), and is a follow up to its report, ‘A Crisis Looming’, published in August last year.
Over 1,700 jobs have been cut since 2016amongst the 65 companies in the survey, it claims.18-34 year olds are being most affected by the cuts as this is the age group most likely to take up overseas roles, such as ski reps and chalet hosts.
The report also points to average cuts in holiday programmes of 19% or 3,800 beds per week, which, said the report, is due to fears that British companies will no longer be able to employ UK staff within the EU on UK terms – for instance paying tax and NI in the UK – and instead will have to pay higher social security contributions overseas.
For many companies, cost increases of this scale will just not be feasible, claims SBiT, adding that Brexit is putting at risk a sector that contributes £16.5 billion to the UK economy.
SBiT’s 200-plus membership include Ski Total (above), Ski Esprit, Inghams, Mark Warner, Skiworld and Alpine Elements.