By 2023, the contribution is expected to drop a further four percent, according to data by Euromonitor International, to represent a mere €2.1 billion – 16 percent – of the €13.8 billion forecast for that year. The figure also represents a significant decrease from 2012, when direct bookings peaked at a total value of €7.1 billion.

SiteMinder’s alarming analysis comes as it launches State of the Nation 2019: How big is the opportunity for hotel bookings in Italy?, a report revealing that the country’s online sales have risen in recent years thanks to rising traveller confidence in using digital channels. Mobile apps are among the digital channels gaining ground, suggests the report, as travellers increasingly seek both information and last-minute deals.