More and more counties see tourism as a part of the driving force of their economy, contributing significantly to wealth and development of the cities that attract not only national but also international tourism due to their historical importance, big museums and vibrant cultural life or stunning sights of nature. Some cities aim differently – they become popular thanks to the great clinics and experienced medical staff and that is the outcome of booming interest in having affordable medical treatments abroad.
Poland is a popular destination for medical tourism
Travelling to and around Poland is much more convenient thanks to the highways and great flight connections with whole Europe according to Medical Tourism Foundation. Every budget airlines have flights to major Polish cities and new connections are set every few weeks, i.e. recently Wizzair’s launched destinations to Szczecin and Katowice, Finnair’s to Gdańsk or even British Airlines to Cracow.
In their latest research about the healthcare system in Poland PwC states that Polish medical tourism is developing at the rate of 12-15% per annum and nearly 400 thousands of patients a year travel to Poland for medical purposes. Among those are patients of dental clinics, spas, medical spas and long-term care facilities, however, the numbers show increasing interest in plastic surgeries, bariatric surgeries, cardiology, orthopaedics, ophthalmology and even oncology. CEE’s hospitals earn around 400 million PLN on foreign patients, making approximately 26 500 hospitals patients per year and 6000 to 8000 in Poland alone. Further development of Polish medical tourism requires both capital and attractive sales strategies to acquire new patients. Turkey is a good example of resilient medical sector aimed at the foreigners, where the government is actively involved in the development of this market.
Poland – great holiday destination
Poland is one of the most beautiful countries in Europe to visit. Everybody heard about magical Old City in Cracow or Warsaw’s skyscrapers. Gdańsk with its gothic architecture and Wrocław – the capital of Silesia and European Capital of Culture in 2016 – are also very popular among the tourist. Every city and small town bear traces of Poland’s tumultuous past and everybody will find something appealing to their tastes. Poland is also famous for nature, i.e. wild Tatry Mountains or Białowieża Forest, which is Europe’s last stretch of primaeval forest and home to renowned European bison. Among Lonely Planet’s recommendation is also Polish Lakeside District – Mazury along with Wieliczka – a beautiful historic salt mine near Cracow.
Treatments in Poland are cheap
Poland is very affordable for foreign patients, as the charges are up to 60% lower than in UK or Germany. Below table shows the price comparison in Poland, UK and the US
6 800 GBP
46 700 GBP
12 200 GBP
4 700 GBP
3 600 GBP
2 600 GBP
7 200 GBP
5 000 GBP
7 000 GBP
31 700 GBP
15 700 GBP
2 900 GBP
3 000 GBP
4 500 GBP
21 600 GBP
21 900 GBP
Things you should know before you visit Poland
- Poland has a temperate climate with warm summers and cold, snowy winters.
- The main airport is Chopin Airport in Warsaw (WAW) with affordable connections with almost every bigger European city; intercontinental flights to the US or Asia are also very popular.
- Polish is the official language of the country, however English, German and French are spoken widely, especially among a younger generation.
- The official currency is Zloty (PLN) with the exchange rate €1 = 4.16 PLN and £1 = 4.73 PLN; tourists are generally advised not to use currency exchange in airports or hotels due to the poor exchange rate.
- Poland uses 230V, 50Hz electrical system and European electrical plugs and it is recommended to have an adapter with you, however, it is becoming popular to find an adapter for the UK or American plugs.