Canary Islands has Christmas with 10% of the tourists compared to last year
Despite the high temperatures that the Canary Islands are registering over the Christmas period, the tourism sector is still frozen. With the third wave of the coronavirus looming throughout Europe, and the withdrawal of practically all European countries to try to contain infections, visitors are not coming.
Christmas has continued with very low occupancy levels similar to those of the previous months, which translate into losses for the hoteliers that are still open. This Christmas it is estimated that 10% of the tourists from 2019 will arrive on the islands.
To them are added the locals, who between December 24th and January 10th will help raise hotel occupancies on the islands, to 30% in some cases although others say they were only at 15%. These figures however, must be seen in perspective since less than 40% of hotels and apartment complexes are open.
The president of the Federation of Hospitality and Tourism Entrepreneurs of Las Palmas (FEHT), José María Mañaricúa, points out that the current tourism of the islands is reduced to 10-15% of that registered last year and that it is mainly Germans.
The UK tourist market is currently non-operational after the confirmation of the new strain of Covid, and air connections have been cut substantially and, for example, Jet2 announced days ago that it will not operate with the islands again until January 5th, with exception of Fuerteventura which they won’t fly to until February 7th 2021.
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National tourism has not been reactivated this Christmas as expected. The restrictions and perimeter closures that have been imposed in some regions prevent the arrival of Spanish tourists from the mainland to spend Christmas here. So, as happened in the summer, it is again the local tourists who occupy the hotels in the south. However, as indicated by the general manager of the Be Cordial Hotels & Resorts chain, Nicolás Villalobos, although local tourism helps the resorts, the effect will be limited.
After Reyes (January 6th) a new void is anticipated. "There is some tourism, especially for the locals but in general, it is dead," says Villalobos. The chain that he runs is keeping all their hotels open in the Canary Islands despite the difficulties, and thus plans to continue despite this fact.